At the end of July 2009, Minneapolis-based rockers Tepetricy hit the studio hard to begin work on their latest release, Intangibles of Tomorrow. While the band originally planned on compiling a five-to-six-song extended play album, their inner demons and struggles proved to be a kink in the machine. But, just when the band thought they wouldn’t be able to continue, a breakthrough emerged in the spring of 2010, as did several more songs. The now full-length album, slated to be their “biggest accomplishment yet,” dropped on Oct. 1, 2010 with a successful CD release show shortly after. Closing in on seven and a half years as a band, Tepetricy is taking every opportunity to share this album with fans and music listeners alike, and proving their spot in the Minneapolis music scene.
Each album has a story behind it. Each name has a meaning. Intangibles of Tomorrow is no different. “Every inch of this album expresses our feelings of being in a band in this music industry,” Robin Rapsys, drums, said. “The cover shows our frustrations, the title infers to the idea of our dreams. Real dreams are intangible in my opinion.” Speaking of his dream to show millions of people their music and getting them to feel what they feel as a band, in conjunction with the hardships of making the album, Intangibles of Tomorrow was what they felt had to be the title of the disc.
Opening the nearly 48-minute long, ten-song album is Montage for a Monster. Heavy guitars and loud toms set the stage for the CD’s tone. The perfect amount of breakdowns, musical transitions and vocal intensity is presented throughout the first song. Steven Fremling, vocals, uses the range he has with great pitch on the chorus as well as his harder screams. Moving smoothly into the second song, Challenger, I began to think maybe they are already placing a slower ballad in the mix. Fortunately, it quickly picks up the pace after Fremling’s graceful opening verse. Beautifully written lyrics paint a picture of a couple sharing a gentle kiss in an overly open pasture. Keyboards, vocals and guitars kick in and give a great alternative to what could have been a slower ballad. One of the most marketable songs on the album, Challenger could easily be heard on 93X and showcases the talents musically that this band does indeed posses. The following song, Emotional Constitution, rides along like a rollercoaster. The first two minutes are a slow tribute from a father to a daughter, questioning his actions and wondering what her life would have been had be been able to be there. Giving into their rock style, a hard riff of guitars and loud drums takes over. I felt this was the first song the long breakdowns could be heard. For a full minute after it began, the song was ripped open into a louder version. “The musical breakdowns have always been a part of our music that we’re proud of,” Rapsys said. “We like to keep the listener in suspense. [And] we’ve always had a touch of progressive styling in our songs.”
Getting halfway through the album with Atlas and The Bronze Outfit, Tepetricy brings out the big guns with these two songs. Atlas, another marketable song, is more ballad-like and in true verse-chorus-verse fashion tells a beautiful rendition of the timeless message that when we push away all the strains in our life and let the tensions fall away, we can really look and see what we have and begin to piece it back together. The fifth song on the album, The Bronze Outfit is what I would like to call the “Blockbuster Hit.” From the very first note of the song, The Bronze Outfit becomes the theme to their latest endeavors. Combining the right amount of guttural screams, solos and fast pace beats this number, Aaron Peterson, guitar, said was written as a crowd anthem with a punky vibe. “It was a fun stretch for us because we got to utilize the electronic drums with a simple song structure,” he said. “I love how I can hit my distortion pedal and forget about it. It does get us pumped up… It’s really fun to bang out.” No. 6 on the album, Aspects Revolution, is unlike any other track you will hear on the album. It is slower, more tantric and contains much longer chord progressions. Hidden halfway through the song is the typical Tepetricy sound but it is definitely more musical. One of the shortest lyrically, it is left open for several different sounds. I did struggle a bit to finish this song as it does have such a wide-open musical canvas with so few lyrics. The words have an interesting storyline and it would have been nice to hear more, instead of the overly long pauses with no words. Moving into the final songs, the album reverts back to the hard rock sound they are so good at doing. Our World In A Raindrop picks up the pace and showcases more guttural sounds Fremling performs with such grace and ease. The following track, Focus Evade is a short interlude of progressive sounds, electronic drums and a deep almost haunting string section accompanied by electric keys. Mimicking Daft Punk ideas, Focus Evade leads right into the ninth track, To Train A Traveling Mind. More deep screams come from Fremling and just like The Bronze Outfit, this song is definitely another crowed hyping song. Becoming familiar now the electric keys, the sound brings a new element of intensity to the song. The final track on the album is also the title track. Taking up an entire 8:06, Intangibles Of Tomorrow is almost an autobiography done musically. Like a last hurrah, everyone in the band takes a piece of the song and puts their special touch on it. Telling of their problematic times and all the doubt they have encountered, Intangibles of Tomorrow brings to the surface their triumph and ability to not only create something they are proud of, but reconcile the demons within themselves and the band as a whole.
Taking genres and mixing them together is all about this latest album’s ideas. Peterson says his music is a relationship consisting of love and trust. And, that exactly is what sets Tepetricy’s music apart. “When I’m writing I can’t help but feel political,” he said. “I’m trying to fulfill as many genres as I can, in one song, without them fighting.” Pouring feelings, heart, soul and even manic frustrations into this album makes it unique, both musically and lyrically.
Hitting the road at the end of the month for a 12-show tour around Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Illinois, Wisconsin and Iowa, Tepetricy is poised and ready to take their new music to bigger crowds. Having the best songs they have ever written up until this point, Rapsys said, the band is proud to showcase their latest album, Intangibles of Tomorrow. “We’ve never been prouder,” he said. “We are building Tepetricy into something unimaginable. One of our close fans told us that they didn’t think we could ever top this release, but all I can say is that we’re just getting started.”
As a whole, Intangibles of Tomorrow is definitely an arena album for the fans. Faster, louder songs can be heard throughout the album and seem to be directed for the crowd. Talented guitars, polished vocals and the harmonizing between instruments definitely put Tepetricy on the map among the Twin Cities great local acts. In true metal style, many musical breakdowns are scattered throughout the songs. At times there was a breakdown or two that seemed to take a bit too long to finish. While the talent was there, it felt too open and too long where lyrics or singing could have filled the void. Aside from that, Intangibles of Tomorrow is a solid local album, which caters to not only the fans but to each member’s creative outlet, as well. If you like progressive metal sounds mixed with some punk and classical elements, Intangibles of Tomorrow is a great album for you.
Top Three Picks:
2. The Bronze Outfit
3. To Train A Traveling Mind