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The best kept secret in music


"theMark – Blackouts of Whitecaps"

“Jekyll Walks” shows The Mark as an emo band that really lives up to their EP title; the song is construed quite like a sea, in which the music breaks over individuals incessantly, only pulling back with the desire to hit the listener harder with the next wave. This is not necessarily only the emo of bands like Senses Fail, but something that has a larger set of influences than most other similar albums.

For example, “Jekyll Walks” has a heavy Tool element to the track, while the guitar work is something that is more assertive and impressive than the largely staid and tepid work found on emo albums. Punchy, shrill at points, the guitar work on “Jekyll Walks” is enough to really get individuals listening into the band. The band is no one trick pony either, as the Spanish-like acoustic guitars of “Untitled” mixes with Eagles-like bass lines (think “New York Minute” to create an instrumental barrier between “Jekyll Walks” and “Canto 12”. The Mark have a lot of things going for them on “Blackouts of Whitecaps”, as “Canto 12” shows that they can exploit the production of this disc.

While the production is great (only showing its limits at points), the band is able to puff themselves up by pounding so hard on the walls imposed on them. The punk-like attitude of “Canto 12” is the perfect medium in which The Mark can do this, and the song has the effect of bringing more listeners to their side. The band is smart in the sense that they mix slower and quicker songs; this means that slower songs like “Untitled” and “Defect & Descend” are book-ended by the band to not allow the band to fall into a melancholy rut. When there is a trend of slower tracks “Defect & Descend” and “Compass Points”, for example, The Mark starts off the latter with the same intensity of tracks like “Jekyll Walks” and “Canto 12” to allow for differentiation to occur. Tool and System of A Down come back in heavy amounts during the bipolar “Compass Points”, a track that has something for everyone. “Blackouts of Whitecaps” has a distinct and large sound to it, but the band handles the collection of different influences admirably. There are no scars on this Frankenstein’s monster, and I for one would like to hear more from them in the years to come.

Top Track: Compass Points -

"THE MARK- Blackouts Of Whitecaps"

A band from Boston, Massachusetts with technical and crunching guitars, great big melodies and genuine songwriting finesse. Killswitch Engage, right? Wrong.

Geography aside, The Mark have more in common with the heady introspection and measured dynamism of Thursday or the reckless rush of Nirvana than any hardcore or metal band. Solid and slicing, stuffed with memorable vocal hooks and clever tunes 'Blackouts...' is actually a welcome respite from Boston's screaming sons. 'Jekyll Walks' is a sawing, expansive opener and 'Canto 12' and 'Defect' drive and sway, managing to be clever and direct at the same time. It's nothing Minus The Bear haven't done before but there is original beauty on show and it's the captivating moments of 'Sapphire' and the untitled interludes here that make The Mark worth a listen. - Moderate Rock Reviews

"theMark - Blackouts of Whitecaps"

theMark — Blackouts of Whitecaps

theMark is a five piece from Boston, Massachusetts who have been around since 2002. Their sound is difficult to classify as it draws from many different genres to create a unique sound that is as stunning as it is captivating. Blackouts of Whitecaps is the follow-up EP to their independently funded 2004 debut album The Catastrophist. The band's acclaim from this EP built exponentially on the buzz their debut album created as their fan base expanded almost as much as their sound.

theMarks guitarists Alec Eiffel and Jay Lovell blend crunching power chords with a sultry counterpoint that draws you in with both its technicality and its beauty. Bassist Jason Autore compliments the guitars with bass lines that not only reinforce the rhythm but accentuate the melody. Vocalist Paul Farris exhibits a mix of crooning sullen notes and strong forceful lead melodies that would fit in among the likes of Thursdays Geoff Rickly and Thrices Dustin Kensrue. Drummer Jordan DeLiso delivers fairly cymbal heavy rhythms with clever fills that tie the songs together nicely.

Each song on this EP is a journey. When you think you know which direction the song is going to go next, you will often be pleasantly surprised how wrong you are. theMarks experimental approach to songwriting employs many jazz and progressive stylings to build their musics intensity to the point where at any given moment the song feels like it may explode. And it often does, at just the right moment. Many bands that consider themselves experimental convey this in their music to the point where only the musical elite can understand what their songs are trying to accomplish. theMark manage to create a kind of subdued complexity that is accessible to anyone and should appeal to many without sacrificing originality.

This is a solid EP all around, and even the untitled interlude tracks are beautiful mini songs of their own. theMark have a bright future ahead of them if they can find some decent label support. If Blackouts of Whitecaps was a persuasive speech, the emotional appeals created by theMark could convince even the most skeptical listener to leap off a tall building or run headlong into a tidal wave. Each song, each line, each note, leaves the listener at the mercy of theMark, leaving them spellbound and begging for more.

--Daniel Smith -

"EDITOR'S PICK March 2006"

theMark — Blackouts of Whitecaps

Boston’s theMark strikes forward with an EP that follows on the heels of their debut full-length. Kinetic guitars that juggle between angular and catchy pop weave throughout the nicely produced records. The vocals are melodic hitting on the harmonic cylinders with occasional screams and yells. Having shared the stage with heavy indie hitters like Quietdrive, New Found Glory, The Receiving End of Sirens, Lux Courageous, Less Than Jake, and the Roots, they’re familiar with the proper direction to head in. The band employs pop, punk, and indie rock with mathematically precise choruses and tremendously creative bridges that bring it all together neatly.

- J-Sin -

"Album Review | Tufts' theMark hits the bullseye"

by Alex Golub-Sass

Over the past few years, the music scene of the Tufts community has had a shadow cast upon it by theMark. With a current incarnation made up of seniors Paul Farris, Alec Eiffel, and Jordan DeLiso, recent grad Jason Autore, and non-Tufts newcomer Jay Lovell, theMark has opened Spring Fling and has played everywhere from Hotung to local clubs (including The Paradise and Avalon).

Unlike many college bands, theMark has a professional sound. In fact, the band doesn't consider itself to be a "college band."

"I would consider us to be more of a regional band," said lead singer Paul Farris, "We've played in 10 states, including all over New England and the East Coast."

Late February saw the release of theMark's third studio work, "Blackouts of Whitecaps." It is complex, well-arranged and full - all qualities usually lacking from independently released EPs.

The first song, "Jekyll Walks," sets a strong pace for the album. Eiffel rips power chords alongside equally strong drumming, but the edge of the music subsides, allowing Farris to accent the song with his lyrics. The lulls in intensity, however, are short-lived as "Jekyll Walks" shifts into fifth gear, and we see an entirely different side of the song. Farris' strong and impassioned vocals guide the song through the dark introspective that is "Jekyll Walks."

"The song is about the split within one's conscience," said Farris, who, along with Eiffel, writes theMark's lyrics. "I get a lot of the lyrics from my own experience, but I try not to sound too epic," said Farris, who uses the literary metaphors of Dante and Robert Louis Stevenson in his song writing.

Throughout the EP, the music and lyrics complement each other well. "Musically, 'Blackouts of Whitecaps' is really chaotic and fast and exciting," said guitarist and backup vocalist Eiffel. Said bassist Autore, "There's a ton of stuff going on in the song, which makes it extremely interesting to both listen to and play."

According to theMark, all of the band's members write the music as a collaborative effort. This collaboration can be heard as the band works together through difficult musical transitions. Farris's vocals have a unique timbre and tone that reach all the high notes, with a seldom-seen fullness that makes even the casual listener stop and listen. Eiffel and Autore play together as if they share the same musical mind, exhibiting virtuosity beyond their years.

Between a few of the songs on "Blackouts of Whitecaps," there are short instrumentals that help connect the overall feel of the album as the tone of the songs changes from pessimistic to optimistic. Early songs like "Canto 12" and "Defect and Descend" are full of energy, with ominous lyrics about loss of control, panic and betrayal. The album begins to climb with the song "Compass Points," a song about searching for the silver lining and trying to find optimism.

The album truly starts to climax, however, with the second instrumental, culminating with the song "Sapphire." This song is a strong outro for EP, ending with the lyrics "Where we came forth / and once more saw the stars / and it was beautiful."

TheMark does not sound identical to other bands; however, its music is somewhat familiar. With "Blackouts of Whitecaps," the band sounds almost like Incubus on the "Make Yourself" album, except with a fuller and more defined sound.

TheMark plays fierce music that proves there is a future for rock and roll. This EP, currently available at, is definitely one that should find its way into your iPod. Whether you live for rock or just need a few high octane songs to keep you going at the gym, theMark delivers what you're looking for. - Tufts Daily


Rock that doesn’t punk out, mellow out, or wimp out- it just rocks. Intelligently. - Independent Clauses


Jekyll Walks : Nice crunchy chords in the intro. And a kick-ass jumpy and skitish melody backed by a nice baseline for the verse. A really nice baseline in fact. Cool harmonized guitars around 1:30, and some good multi-voiced screaming a bit later that works nicely, having emotion but no emo pretention. But you know what's in this song, as you've written it, so maybe it's more logical to go for general impressions. Basically, I love the instrumentation on this. The bassline over the clean guitar build to the bridge-esque structure is super awesome. Everything flows so well together, and there's obviously a lot of thought put into texturing your songs, with guitar parts and extra vocal parts all flying in and out. Had I a hat, it'd be off. Oh, and really nice lyrics too. Especially the disdain / pride bit.

Canto 12 : First off, canto is one of my favorite words ever, so points right there. Beyond that, I love the mellow intro, and then the whole verse / chorus bits up until the bridge, when things really start rocking. Great bass work again during the bridge, and cool nasal guitar melodies. This is a really good song overall as well, and I love the lyrics dealing with galleons and sailing ships. Your turns of phrase show a wonderful attention to sound values and wordplay. Well done.

Defect and Descend : Again, great bass. I love the twiddly clean guitar fill stabbing out from the right channel during the first bit, and the similar reoccurring fill played by both guitars at the end of every few bars. And the bass playing rocks. Again. The energey that jumps into the song around 3:45, where everything picks up, is a well-crafted moment, and the random noise around 4:20 and staying till the end is excellent. Another very well done song.

Compass Points : A good build of tension in the beginning. I was expecting something triumphant and loud for the next part, so the break to clean guitars and general mellowness was nice and unexpected. Great bass work throughout this song, and the guitar work is great. I love the driving snare-roll part around 2:30 or so. You've got a great command over moods in this song, switching between calm and chaos easily. Great work.

These individual song reviews strike me as hopelessly mired in the moment without any sense of the more general impressions you've made on me, so here's something perhaps more useful. First of all, I love your musicianship, especially your bass work. You guys take rock and make it fun, going more for awesome melodies and ridiculously cool basslines in lieu of big chords and simple shadowing lines. You have a knack for creating these really cool textured and complex songs without being self-indulgent about it, keeping your songs nice and listenable and captivating. And then you have the ability to make interesting and quirky lyrics to go with all this. Basically, I'm super impressed with you guys, and with the changes between this new ep and the older stuff from the catastrophist that I still listen to. So keep on rocking, and try to play the grog shop in cleveland. - More Monks Than Reason


CD/EP - Blackouts of Whitecaps - 2006
01. jekyll walks
02. -
03. canto 12
04. defect & descend
05. compass points
06. -
07. sapphire
recorded at Magpie Sound Design in Dorchester, MA
mastered at Peerless Mastering

CD/LP - The Catastrophist - 2004
01. identity theft
02. glacier
03. come right in
04. faith in flight
05. coffee stains & cigarette blisters
06. trains
07. reprise
08. the catastrophist
09. cliffside
10. someone else's dream
11. cluster bombs
recorded at Magpie Sound Design in Dorchester, MA
mastered at Peerless Mastering

CD/EP - ep1 - 2003
01. coming my way
02. a winter's day
03. speed things up
04. cliffside
recorded at Todd Hobin Studio B in Syracuse, NY


Feeling a bit camera shy


theMark are a difficult entity to describe. Known for their raw and chaotic live performances and original music, the Boston quintet has swept across the east coast and the internet, leaving fans and new friends in their wake.

Combining a rock sound, a punk attitude, and an experimental approach to songwriting, theMark has found it difficult to place their sound within any one genre and have heard comparisons across the musical spectrum. “People hear everything from The Police to the Foo Fighters to Tool to At the Drive-In to Thursday in us” explains guitarist Alec Eiffel. Their first full length album The Catastrophist, independently funded and released in May 2004, was widely praised for its intertwining guitar lines, incredible dancing bass, unique vocal style and memorable drum beats. Highlighted by poignant lyrics, infectious riffs, and catchy choruses, theMark thrilled listeners with their manic energy and musical proficiency as well as an intense dedication to each and every fan, eventually selling out all 500 copies of the record.

In the beginning the group came together from states across the country—New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Minnesota, and Hawaii—forming in 2002 as the five aligned in Boston, MA and began to create their signature sound with the release of their first CD/EP. Playing everywhere from basements to colleges to some of the most prestigious rock clubs in the region (such as The Middle East, TT the Bears, and The Paradise in Boston and The Knitting Factory and The Continental in NYC, etc), theMark have spread their music persistently and with great success in MA, NH, NY, ME, CT, RI, VT, NJ, and PA. They have also shared the stage with national acts like The Roots, Less Than Jake, New Found Glory, The Receiving End of Sirens, Lux Courageous, Quietdrive, Downtown Singapore and many others. In 2005, theMark won round after round of the prestigious Emergenza international music festival to rock the national finals at a sold out show at 2000 capacity Avalon Ballroom.

With the release of their brand new CD/EP Blackouts of Whitecaps in 2006, theMark have taken their unique sound to an all new level. Meticulously recorded and produced at the warehoused Magpie Sound Design in Dorchester , MA , listeners will be pleased to hear theMark’s most original piece of musical work to date.

2006 is the year of theMark.