Crossing the Invisible Line
First Appeared in The Music Box, January 2005, Volume 12, #1
Written by John Metzger
Raman Kia (a.k.a. Buddahead) was born in war-torn Iran where violence and bloodshed were part of his daily life. There, he saw the darkest of images and witnessed an endless stream of raids, bombings, shootings, torture sessions, and public executions. To escape, he took solace in music, playing piano and writing songs, before his father sent him at the age of nine to live with his estranged mother in England. Now a young adult, Kia is attempting to turn his passion into a career, and given his background, he should have plenty to say. Unfortunately, his debut Crossing the Invisible Line fails to make a bold statement of any kind. Instead, its 11 folk-pop confessionals about love, loss, and personal struggle are so simplistic and generic that they could have been written by anyone. As a result, little of Kiaís personality and few of his experiences are imprinted upon the affair. Even worse, the smooth, slick, radio-friendly production drains from the material whatever life is left, leaving behind only a stream of pleasant melodies with a hollow core. The lone bright spot on Crossing the Invisible Line is Kiaís voice, which occasionally glides and soars with all the dreaminess of Jeff Buckley or Thom Yorke. Too often, however, itís buried beneath a layer of strings and guitars that serves only to restrain his heartfelt evocations and render them impotent.
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2005 The Music Box