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  Into the Light 
Artist: Arcade
Label:  Wooden Man Records 
Length: 11 tracks/27:29 minutes 

Rock 'n' roll is largely a male-dominated genre to be sure.  While chic rockers are out there, they are sometimes harder to locate than a WMD in Iraq.  And even worse, when the woman who happens to get the most press is Courtney Love, the situation looks ever more dire. 

Good news has arrived in the form of Arcade, the hardest-rocking chic outfit to ever come out of Muncie, Indiana.  While not exactly hailing from a hotbed of entertainment icons (hey, I can relate, my hometown’s most famous entertainer is Elizabeth Shue), this four-member band has created with their record _Into the Light_ an indy music gem worthy of high praise.  Although influenced by the punk sound, Arcade defies this label.  They throw in enough musical eccentricities and oddities with their rhythmic sophistication and unconventional guitar work to trademark a sound that is clearly there own.   This is an impressive feat for a debut album. 

The lyrical and vocal heart and brains of the operation is Carrie Conley.  Her high-energy yelp mixed in with occasional backtracking into almost gentle breathiness reveals a remarkable talent for adaptability.  Her lyrical prowess is equally evident as she keeps her message direct yet with artistic flair.  

Highly recommended tracks include the opener “Black As...” which showcases the frenetic guitar work of Jill Gerwe.  The wistful “Holly” is another great track and probably the closest thing on the album that sounds close to “radio friendly”— friendly for the college radio circuit anyway. 

Into the Light is a rock album with highly creative sensibilities. In essence, it is indy rock at its finest.  Arcade is a band that is sure to attract a hardcore following among rock sophisticates who are dissatisfied with today’s emo-saturated landscape.  

If Arcade does have an Achilles heel, it may be their music is TOO unconventional for the music masses.  Something tells me the band is fine with this though.  Kudos to them. 

Noel Lloyd 4/5/2004 

   
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