Scales of Motion
Credits: Stephen Carradini
A little-used definition of the word "elegant" is "pleasingly ingenious and simple." It's that definition I think of when I characterize Scales of Motion's post-punk/rock/other mix as elegant. The three-piece takes very complicated, technical instrumental work and synthesizes it in a way that feels pleasing, clever and interesting. Even when the drummer is playing seemingly erratic hits, the guitarist is banging a distorted chord, and the bassist is tracking all over the fretboard, you can be assured that a resolution will arrive. And it most often does in an incredibly satisfying way.
The three members all contribute vocals to the mix, with bassist taking the sung vocals, the guitarist taking the spoken and yelled vocals, and the drummer providing back-up harmonies. This democratic distribution of vocals only serves to enhance the song-first motive that Scales puts out: all the band members are incredibly talented at their instruments, but each is subsumed into putting out good songs. And with all the technical, rhythmic and melodic complexity, the songs are unique and memorable. You can sing along to some songs; other songs skew too hard or too wild for anthemic melodies. But Scales of Motion makes room for all of it in their amalgam, and that's what makes them a consistently interesting band.