By Devin Morse
At first, it’s a little hard to measure Nautical Mile. Imagine what Evanescence would sound like if they fully grasped the concepts of scales, chords and creative song structure. Add to this some catchy vocal melodies, a few well-placed pick slides, and a healthy amount of talent, and Invisible Ink will move you by at least some measurable distance.
Comparing Nautical Mile to the plastic, mass-produced sound of Evanescence may be a bit unfair. Submerged within this four-song EP, one may net small bits of At The Drive In, Pantera, or even Led Zeppelin. Still, much of what emerges is reminiscent of early 2000’s, female-vocal driven pop rock. The feeling is one of drama, showing a slight tendency to navigate rough, personal oceans while still falling victim to a number of pop music clichés. But there is some strong musicianship here, and somehow it all evens out.
The first track, “Weeds,” is the best of the lot. True to form, the verse sections churn in distorted maelstrom, breaking violently against the heavy-rocking chorus sections. The instrumentals are interesting and tight (think Omar Rodríguez-López), and the vocal melodies are catchier than Syphilis on an 1840’s shrimping vessel. Although it seems rather unlikely, considering the dramatic nature of the music, this song appears to be about gardening.
Overall, Nautical Mile has a tendency to ride mostly just one musical current.
Still, they pilot these waters in a well-constructed vessel, with the technical skill and talent of seasoned navigators.