A few weeks ago I received word that guitarist Joey Magnanti (formerly of Hawkins Rise) had formed a new band with the enigmatic name of Karma and The Truth (the cool kids call them KatT for short). With a ‘fresh from the manufacturing plant’ CD already making waves throughout the area, I had to know more. Intrigued, you ask? Why yes, I was. When that new release titled Between Standing & Falling finally arrived, I excitedly tore through the packaging like Kirstie Alley opening a box of Krispy Kreme, and earnestly began to give each of the 11 tracks a thorough listening.
From the get-go, these guys reek of professionalism and demonstrate an ability to take a legitimately heavy rock style and turn it into radio-ready, major label-sounding gold. Certainly aided in no small measure by the fact that Between Standing & Falling was co-produced and engineered by local studio svengali Joe Moody, the resulting performances illustrate an excessively adroit and mature execution. Basically this album kicks some serious rock ‘n’ roll ass.
The disc of all-original material starts off with the heavy driving, “Circling The Drain.” With dueling, grunge-laden guitar work provided by Seth Salois and the aforementioned Joey Magnanti, the song’s rhythm pulses along with a dynamically deliberate groove provided by drummer Nino Trovato and bass man Tofer Simpson. Salois’ vocals, in shades slightly reminiscent of Geoff Tate and Eddie Vedder, provide a classic hook in the chorus “You can change your life or stay the same. In the end it’s all the same – When you feel alive escape the blame, instead of circling the drain.”
The quasi power-ballad “Time To Let Go” is a perfect example of what I mean by my claim that these guys are major label-ready. One hundred professional songwriters locked in a room for a week couldn’t come up with a prettier melody or more potent lyrics. “I woke up today and planned escape, the note you left was all in vain, I still believe the plan was three days late … Chasing down our last mistakes, we’ve burned the bridge but not the gates.”
And while on the subject of songwriting, Karma and The Truth outdo themselves on that front with “Dont Fear The Water,” a track that could top any pop, rock, adult contemporary or alternative charts with ease. The number contains all the earmarks of a well-crafted song, including a memorable chorus: “Dont fear the water and hide behind and watch it pass you by…”
Sure everybody wants to be a rock ‘n’ roll star, yet for over 50 years few have figured out exactly how to make it happen. But once in a while a group of musically like-minded artists join together to create a cohesive, convincing product that has the potential for mass appeal. Karma and The Truth are that band, and Between Standing & Falling is an indication that these guys are a serious band with a potent product. KatT has already proven themselves a formidable live act, crisscrossing New England for the better part of a year, not only opening for nationals, but also headlining venues themselves. With music like this, these guys have earned themselves some seriously good KARMA…and that’s THE TRUTH!!! See what I did there… Karma … Truth…? What, no good?