CD, self-released, 2004
Opaq Face’s (a.k.a. Jeremy Herskowitz and Rob Bishop) “Close Enough” is a 30 minute ride in the world of melancholic synthpop… But is it any good?
To start off this review, I’ll mention that I’m a bit of a quality freak. The synths in the record are mostly well thought and make some very decent attempts to create an epic/melancholic atmosphere. Alas, their very low quality ruins the impression for me. Jeremy Herskowitz’s vocals range from good to lacking, sometimes failing to convey the feeling of the quite good lyrics. A very redeeming quality is Bishop’s guitar play, which gives the overall sound a richer feel than quite a few synths-only bands. The fact that the sound quality of the album is surprisingly crisp is a mixed blessing in this case, as this unfortunately serves in pointing out all the flaws mentioned before.
The fact that it’s self-released leaves a great margin for leniency, especially if you consider that the album sometimes plays better than, say, a VNV live. A stricter producer, better equipment, more studio time and a bit of work on the vocals would really elevate the end result to greater heights. The potential and creativity is here, and it is good, just like the band’s actual musical performance and songwriting, thus, I am expecting more from them.
Had this been a live album, it’d get a 7, but for now, they’ll get a 6/10. The potential is there… with better equipment, more work, better production, Opaq Face may deliver a good followup that will surely live up to its promise.
— George Mouratidis