Imagine if Bono lived next to Trent Reznor instead of Tina Turner. Imagine if he was a guilty, lapsed Calvinist instead of a lapsed Catholic. Now, imagine he hated you and everyone else, himself included. Once you have that idea pulled together, you start to get an idea of what Ours sounds like.
At times, it is hard not to imagine that Ours has fallen victim to every cliché regarding “modern rock” artists. From the artsy and gothicy photos that adorn the CD case (including the first page, where the word “suffer” is written, in handwriting, of course) to the songs with moving titles like, “Fallen Souls,” I’m A Monster,” “Bleed,” and “Miseryhead.” The music has that dark, proto-gothic and glam rock sound full of breathy vocals. Luckily, the songs don’t include any techno or electronic beats.
In all fairness, the one redeeming quality of this release, and what separates the album from most of the other crap being forced across the airwaves, is the lead singer, Jimmy Gnecco, who has an incredible voice. Sometimes he goes a little bit too far into histrionics, but overall, he has a startling set of pipes. Unfortunately, the music seems to have been produced and designed by some accountant based on “what’s hip with the kids,” and this seems to betray what Mr. Gnecco is attempting to accomplish. Despite it all, he does seem sincere in his passion for music. Sadly, sincerity cannot compensate for a lack of ideas or an over-reliance of style over substance. Buyer beware.