Tablefox - Don't Wait For Me To Be What You Want Me To Be - Song Review - '90s Alternative Rock from Auckland, New Zealand

Tablefox - Don't Wait For Me To Be What You Want Me To Be - Song Review - '90s Alternative Rock from Auckland, New Zealand
Tablefox - Don't Wait For Me To Be What You Want Me To Be - Song Review - '90s Alternative Rock from Auckland, New Zealand

At the end of another insignificant day, a small piece in the process of my surreal journey in the North, I'm sitting in a dark room with Tablefox's new release, "Don't Wait For Me To Be What You Want Me To Be," playing in my earphones after a few days since I last gave it a listen. These gentlemen, with their established sound, are from Auckland, New Zealand, presenting us with their boundless music.

'Don’t Wait For Me To Be What You Want Me To Be' draws inspiration from the 1993 cult movie Falling Down. The song, led by singer Clinton Bell, delves into the complexities of human emotion, exploring the internal conflicts that everyone encounters. The song title itself hints at the central theme, conveying a message about authenticity and not conforming to others' expectations. The influence of Falling Down is evident in the song's narrative, mirroring the movie's exploration of the struggles faced by the average person. The single confronts the darker voices that can haunt the mind, aligning with the film's themes of idealism, bravado, and the inherent flaws in humanity. Clinton Bell, reflecting on the creative process, mentions that the band members brought a compelling melody and chords to him. The imagery from Falling Down quickly emerged, but he felt the need to infuse a thread of hope into the narrative. This addition adds a layer of optimism to the song, contrasting with the potentially bleak portrayal of internal struggles. Drawing parallels to the movie's protagonist, Bell notes that while individuals may come close to the edge of breaking, they often refrain from crossing that line, distinguishing them from the character in Falling Down. The song was engineered by Emily Wheatcroft-Snape at Roundhead Studios, mixed by Scott Seabright (Mumford and Son's, SIX60, Passenger) & mastered by Leon Zervos (Midnight Oil, Aerosmith, INXS). Video written, produced and directed by Hamish Graham and Zest Studios.

The song possesses such quality and balance that details don't really matter anymore unless you are into the details just like me, to understand what makes Tablefox one of the best-sounding rock bands I have recently discovered. It took me only a few seconds to make up my mind about the song; I still remember my first experience vividly. And from my perspective, after around two weeks since my discovery, they simply remind me of one of my all-time favorite rock bands with their concept, balance, established standards, and international sound; Keane. In short, Tablefox stands out with the foundational standards showcased in "Don't Wait For Me To Be What You Want Me To Be," and that is quite impressive. Indeed, these New Zealand gentlemen have been releasing music since 2015, yet just like I said earlier, when you achieve a sound of this level and quality, some details don't really matter anymore.

Musically, although the song is crafted with a simple and familiar-sounding '90s alternative rock sound with a radio-friendly structure, it doesn't really matter whether Tablefox or a legendary '90s rock band is playing. It is undeniable to me that the band envisioned and executed all the ideas flawlessly, something you don't necessarily expect from an up-and-coming band, but only from professionals. While incorporating all the familiar-sounding elements in their uniquely Western language, it flows like a nostalgic picture in your mind, pulling the listener into its world.

Technically, the song meets industry-leading standards to an extent that convinces me Tablefox has found their signature sound and quality. From this point onward, I see them as a serious contender at rock festivals around the world.

Tablefox, band photo. Credit: Unknown

On the other side of the coin, after writing my review up to this point, I unconsciously went back to the submission page and, surprisingly, found the music video for it, and told myself; maybe I had a little too high expectations for Tablefox. I wished and envisioned something entirely different, expected them to mirror their success in sound quality and songwriting skills in the video. With all due respect, I would like to mention two things.

First, as a music enthusiast discovering a great-sounding new band, I envisioned strong visuals with the necessary concept, visualizing a band image that truly represents such musical quality. I believe their mysterious approach that doesn't involve showing themselves doesn't really work in their favor.

Secondly, Tablefox is aiming at Foo Fighters level with their music and an underground level with their music video, and that caused me confusion. As subjective as it sounds, I'd prefer listening to the song without the video.

Tablefox, band photo. Credit: Unknown

In conclusion, Tablefox is a band universally awaiting recognition. Mimicking '90s radio-friendly alternative rock pioneers in its sound production, and supporting the concept with talent capable of writing and performing music reminiscent of Keane. Strongly recommended, securing itself a spot in Metalhead Community's "New Rock Chronicles: Beyond the Mainstream." Thank you for reading.

Tablefox, Don't Wait For Me To Be What You Want Me To Be - single front cover image. Credit: Unknown.


Matt - Guitar,
Clinton - Vocals & Guitar,
Chris - Bass & Vocals,
Henrik- Drums

Tablefox on the web:

Tablefox. 16.555 vind-ik-leuks · 35 personen praten hierover. New single ‘Don’t Wait for Me to Be What You Want Me to Be’ out March 29.
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Break free from the mainstream and explore the depths of rock's underground with 'New Rock Chronicles: Beyond the Mainstream.'