Out now on Rock It Up Records
Toby Knapp has been featured at Virtuosity One before for his album “The Campaign” which was home to good guitar work but poor vocals and production. Well we have another release for our appraisal in “Misanthropy Divine” and for the most part it’s a better offering.
Granted we still have production issues with poor sounding drum samples (although the patterns and arrangements by Knapp are quite cool); whilst vocalist on four tracks Deen Sternberg is nothing more than competent. Apparently Knapp has a problem finding musicians in his local area to work with – might we suggest using the wonder that is internet to get some suitable musicians involved from outside his local base?
Luckily once again Knapp impresses with his six string prowess that’s runs the gamut of rock and metal styles – the guy can play and you wonder why he isn’t better known but then when you hear the very average production etc you know why. No matter how good material may be nothing scares off a potential fan base quicker in this day and age than a shoddy mix and production. I don’t want to bash Toby but his quality level needs to be higher in terms of production, this sounds nothing better than rough demo quality for the most part which is a shame as the music is mostly good and deserves a much better presentation than what it gets.
On the whole “Misanthropy Divine” is a much better offering than “The Campaign” and despite its obvious sonic flaws has some great instrumentals such as “The Forlorn”, “Dreaming The Microplex” and the title track. The vocal tracks as mentioned before do not fare so well but mostly because of the vocals themselves but could be good with the right vocalist etc…
Overall the best release I have heard yet from Knapp but still in need of much better quality control.
Rating – 65%