You have to give credit to a band writing relatively dark music that leads off its album with a song called "Clown Car Suicide." Amid sometimes biting, melodic guitar rhythms, string filigrees and Melati Olivia's classically inflected vocals, the music of Choke the Word often recalls Loreena McKennitt if she had embraced rock more than her Celtic leanings. "Gilgamesh" is similarly flavored, but the bass line is reminiscent of something Simon Gallup might have done, giving the song a moody low-end counterpoint melody. "In June" finds the band weaving together shimmery atmospheres and distorted passages that flirt with the metallic. That juxtaposition can be heard elsewhere on the album and often works to balance out the music's soft edges, as on "Mariana." Ultimately, Choke the Word's debut is a duskily melodic affair, with shades of Fields of the Nephilim and Evanescence.
Keep Westword Free... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Denver with no paywalls.