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The Question [Deluxe Edition] [CD/DVD]

Emery 2007


With Question, Emery try their best to fall just outside the vast domain that is emo, but for all their efforts, the shimmering guitars, melodic verses, and at times larger-than-life choruses prove their attempts in vain. "So Cold I Could See My Breath" is a good example, as lead singer Toby Morell and company offer up a beefy chorus with great harmonies before ebbing back to the softer portion of their soft-hard framework. There is a portion where the delayed harmonies are comparable to the Futureheads, yet it's only temporary. A bit of angst never hurts, even if it's placed in such a well-worn arrangement. "Playing with Fire" fares better as guitarist Matt Carter complements the retro-meets-new wave keyboard work of Josh Head. The hook also works in the chorus as Morell wails away on each word while the pop smarts in the vein of XTC makes for an interesting dichotomy on the metal-tinged "Returning the Smile You Have Had from the Start." By far, though, the selling point has to be the finely tuned and lean-sounding "Studying Politics," which discovers its groove and rides the hell out of it, creating one of their strongest numbers thus far despite the brief but spacy, cheesy coda. The winding, swaying, and oddly titled "Listening to Freddie Mercury" has nothing much to do with the late Queen singer; instead the track creates a quasi-anthem far too fragmented to be taken seriously. One sleeper pick might be "Miss Behavin'," which has a high-octane punk-meets-sweeping, majestic pop feel to it thanks to Carter and drummer Dave Powell. Emery sound like a group repeating themselves on "The Terrible Secret," a radio-friendly, up-tempo ditty. The album concludes with the one-two combo of "In a Lose, Lose Situation" and "In a Win, Win Situation," the latter being a lengthy, maudlin sort of track that Emery drag out too often. [This CD/DVD edition contains bonus material.] ~ Jason MacNeil
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  1. # Track Artist Length
  2. 1 So Cold I Could See My Breath Emery 3:32
  3. 2 Playing with Fire Emery 3:51
  4. 3 Returning the Smile You Have Had from the Start Emery 3:5
  5. 4 Studying Politics Emery 3:31
  6. 5 Left with Alibis and Lying Eyes Emery 3:23
  7. 6 Listening to Freddie Mercury Emery 2:43
  8. 7 The Weakest Emery 4:4
  9. 8 Miss Behavin' Emery 3:18
  10. 9 In Between 4th and 2nd Street Emery 0:33
  11. 10 The Terrible Secret Emery 3:29
  12. 11 In a Lose, Lose Situation Emery 3:57
  13. 12 In a Win, Win Situation Emery 5:29
  14. 13 Playing with Fire [Acoustic] Emery 4:19
  15. 14 The Ponytail Parades [Acoustic] Emery 4:22
  16. 15 Walls [Acoustic] Emery 3:56
  17. 16 Fractions [Acoustic] Emery 4:47
  18. 17 Studying Politics [Acoustic] Emery 3:37
  19. 18 Death to Inconvenience [Demo] Emery 3:51
  20. 19 Thoughtlife [Demo] Emery 4:0

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