Being released on the same day with Toby Hitchcock and Work of Art, Xorigin's 'State of The Art' rejects to be overshadowed by the two diamonds that are competing to be in the top spot of this year's melodic rock race. Although I must admit that this band still struggles with the songwriting consistency throughout the album hence can't win that race, the foundation of this album was built strong and that's what important for them to capitalize more success on the sophomore release.
Slick and memorable melodic rock arrangement, sensible AOR touch, massive sing-along chorus, some essential keys to garner critical acclaim from the critics are basically there. You can't go wrong with 'Can't Keep Running' or the tears-dropping 'Crying For You'. They knew how to construct a perfect bridge between the starting verse to the sensational chorus. 'Too Late' and 'The One For Me' are what you want to call "an utterly-brilliant melodic rock composition". 'Mend My Heart' makes a great cooling-down track, a heartfelt ballad that's put in the right spot.
Lots of keyboard involved and many songs were comfortably played in the midtempo rhythm, so you know what to expect. Fans of heavier music might not be amused with slower tunes like 'In The Blink of An eye' or maybe 'Matters of The Heart', but if you like songs that are tender and harmless to your wife's ears but still got that necessary rockin’ edge, this album is a good pick. Now, song like 'What Love Is All About' made me think that 'are they listening to Work of Art a lot?' because the vibe is so similar, the song itself is wonderful in its own way, love that track!
Shame some tracks like 'Gina' or 'Said And Done' was lacking something big somewhere inside the arrangement and condemned to be their weak spot. With at least 3 average tunes but luckily overflown by so many great tracks, I can consider Xorigin's debut was a success, especially in the ocean of new releases this year, I found many delicious fishes in the MHR territory, and 'State of The Art' was definitely one of them. Well done!