Cutting Room Rug finds Arms Of Kismet stirring indie rock and post pop with an alt-country twang, giving the record quite a unique flavor. On this sophomore set, Arms of Kismet dare to go a bit off kilter from the norm, which they seem to be relatively comfortable with, after their successful 2004 debut Eponymous. With equal parts sugary ballads, indie rock jammers, and folky sing-a-longs, Cutting Room Rug is both a light and dark journey into the abnormal, abstract, and just plain weird.
Leading off team ballad is "Coil", a reverb-heavy jaunt that slow-jams its way through five minutes of stuck-in-your-head guitar hooks and sing-a-long lyrics. This is arguably the best track to be found on the record, with an amazing baseline and engaging songwriting. Next up to bat is "Life Imitates", another sappy ditty that has frontman Mark Doyon crooning about life, love, and death, with again, intelligent and thought-provoking songwriting.
Cutting Room Rug is full of mysterious, atmosphere-laden joyrides, where you never know just where the train is taking you. Transitioning into tracks such as "Cracks", "Outbound Train", and "Clover" are perfect examples of this, stringing you along in one direction then suddenly veering hard right, jolting you into another path altogether. The highly danceable "Pinnacle Of Same" finds Arms Of Kismet in yet another atmosphere, making listeners hip-hop and toe-tap to it's groovy drum beat and deep bed of cheerful keyboards.
Sadly though, some tracks here are wasted, with two thirty second blips of smarmy and annoying DJ's talking in radio mumble-jumble taking up valuable digital real estate, while the album closer "Listen To You" is a rather excruciatingly slow and difficult-to-listen-to crawler that gums up the pacing of this album tremendously. However, Cutting Room Rugis a very unique and fresh approach to the whole indie, alt-country, post-everything style of music and makes for a great alternative for those times when you feel like gallivanting down the road less traveled.