Crosstown Chameleons are a Rock orientated band hailing from Miami, FL. Their latest album ‘Plato’s Stepchildren’ was released in May 2018 and is a stunning collection of work. Comprised of Bill Scherer – Vocals, Will Montgomery – Drums, Rob Kayes – Acoustic Guitar and Gabe Stivala – Electric Guitar, the band have produced an album catchy in nature, filled with depth, warmth and interest.
The 11 track album takes the listener on a sonic journey through exciting guitar riffs and excellent musicianship. The opening Track ‘ Summer’ has a vivid texture, beautiful harmonies and will have you reaching for the repeat button. The chords progressions are interesting with suspended ones being mixed in, create layers upon layers of depth and curiosity.
It is hard to choose but the stand out tracks for us are ‘Color of My Heart’, for it’s welcoming acoustic start, interesting chord changes with semi tone chords descending and subtle synths underpinning a catchy classic. Interestingly, Rob Kayes took the lead vocal on the track for the first time after years of him being at the heart of songwriting for the band. ’Blackjack’ with the harp opening followed by the Brian May style guitar solo, accompanied by the other guitars holding their own rhythms while complimenting the fore front instruments. Also, ‘Maybe I’m Just Crazy’ takes a more bluesy turn, with gorgeous guitar solos. It remind us of Steely Dan, the vocals have a touch of Donald Fagon to them, the big Walter Becker style guitar riffs and wonderful synths carrying the track along. The final track ‘Mirage’ is taken from a live performance and is a heavier, rockier tune.
The overall musicianship is top notch, to a very high standard. Bill Scherer’s lead vocals are simply stunning and shine through. His tone and control are pure talent, sounding effortless and giving power and strength to each track. The bass and drums offer steady time keeping with delicate intricate nuisances keeping Crosstown Chameleons sound fresh and interesting. All of the guitar work has a direct purpose, it is a star when it needs to be and brilliant accompaniment when it needs to carry the background rhythm. All of the songs have had contributions from each member of the band showing their skills in not only playing but in composition also.
It is clear to hear the love and dedication that has gone into ‘Plato’s Stepchildren’. The fact that Crosstown Chameleons are #1 in Miami, #1 in South Florida and #9 Nationally on the the ReverbNation Rock chart speaks for itself. Their diverse sound and charming rhythms make for a formidable force. We can not wait to hear what comes next from this wonderful band.
Reviewed by FVreviews May 2018