The name “Walk In Medical” conjures thoughts of discreet care for decidedly personal issues, but there’s thankfully no itching or burning to be had from the Costa Mesa band’s six-song debut EP, The Recluse.
Musically, Walk In Medical—together for about two years—are nothing to feel embarrassed about. The temptation is always to pin a band down to a certain sub-genre, no matter how ridiculous it may sound (that’s how you end up with monstrosities such “post-hardcore acid jazz fusion”), but the band don’t lend themselves to any easy classification, other than sounding like what was, in a bygone era, called “alternative rock.” Back in the ‘90s, any modern rock band who didn’t fall into an obvious category were burdened with the ersatz “alternative” tag, and Walk In Medical follow closely in that tradition.
None of that sounds terribly complimentary, but if Walk In Medical sound a little out-of-time, that’s not a bad thing. Gloomy opener “Diamonds” does an effective job of setting the mood, with the slightly nasal delivery of lines such as “I can hear the death of your soul, I can see you losing control” making an impact on the listener. Bouncier tracks such as “Marbles” work similarly well. But while the EP is encouraging—musically, it’s solid throughout with some nifty guitar work—it’s not necessarily exciting. The vocals, while distinctive, are rather one-note, leading to each song on the record blending together. While it’s clear the band are having fun with much of the lyrics (“Dance, silly scene kids, dance, to the brain zombie jam,” whatever that means), it’s sometimes a bit too juvenile for it’s own good. The Recluse shows a young band that could either follow their strengths or give in to their weaknesses.
Walk In Medical at Detroit Bar, 843 W.19th St., Costa Mesa, (949) 642-0600. Tues., 8:30 p.m. Visit www.myspace.com/walkinmedical for more information.
Attention Orange County/Long Beach musicians and bands! Mail your music, along with your vital contact info and decent high-resolution photos (plus any impending performance dates) for possible review to: Locals Only, OC Weekly, 1666 N. Main St., Ste. 500, Santa Ana, CA, 92701. Or just be lazy and e-mail your MySpace link to email@example.com.
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