Action Makes Upper Down

Action Makes are five guys from Peterborough, Ontario who like their rock straight-forward and without any complications. That translates into an album where the guitar is king and where the crowning moment of any song is the solo. And that’s fine I suppose for those who feel the same way, but everyone else might find Upper Down a little unexciting and uninspired. Every now and again, a guitar howls in a Pixies-esque manner or the vocals take on a Tragically Hip-like quality, but for the most part, there’s not much of their own personality on show and the songs just lumber along. In their defence, the band recorded every track on either the first or second take, meaning that maybe there wasn’t the time or inclination to go back and add something extra, but simply having a "big” sound isn’t enough to guarantee people will stop and listen. And having unfeasibly long songs (including one clocking in at more than 11 minutes) doesn’t help their cause either. (Independent)