Listening years afterward, one is struck by how well the whole effort still holds together: the influential songwriting, musicianship, and above all Lou Giordano's production with the up-and-coming Carl Plaster assisting.
Moving Targets was a band who never got their due and remained largely unacknowledged -- even in Boston years down the line -- for their important contributions as a post-punk and pre-grunge link.
Still, the breakneck pace and attack of their debut Burning in Water had decidedly ebbed two years later. What listeners hear is the predictable maturing of a band, after their debut LP, doing a fine job of battling the sophomore slump. Bassist Pat Leonard had been replaced by Chuck Freeman, who makes significant vocal and instrumental contributions.
On Nothing Changes - Moving Targets - Brave Noise like "Carcrash," his backing vocals are far more pronounced and well-conceived than the seeming afterthoughts of lead singer Kenny Chambers' own voice-on-voice overdubs on Burning in Water. And on other songs, such as "Separate Hearts," Freeman's basslines take center stage, modulating with chorus Mucuripe - Raimundo Fagner - Manera Fru Fru, Manera flanging effects in Cure-like intros and breaks.
Giordano opens up the band's sound to other possibilities on the record. He might have been encouraged by Chambers spreading his Havok - Depthcharge / Cyclone as a songwriter or vice-versa.
Chambers still had one foot in his Boston's hardcore-scene upbringing, but more attention is spent on the melodic and layered side of pop and classic rock songwriting. The remaining nods to punk come in the eschewing of endless guitar soloing -- even when the timing seems to be begging for it and he was fully capable of torrid leads, as heard in his contributions to the band Bullet Lavolta -- and in the shorter bursts of rage and bombast than the extended anthems of Burning in Water.
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