The Record Lounge: Reviews 8/19/2010 – Iron Maiden, Ra Ra Riot, The Lonestar Chain, The Silver Seas

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Iron Maiden – The Final Frontier

I had fully planned on writing a review on this record. Then I caught wind, our good friend over at Birth School Metal Death, who is an Iron Maiden aficionado, was preparing a full review of the album. So I stepped back and let him tell us what he thought of The Final Frontier.

“Meanwhile, our heroes of the incredibly legendary NWOBHM movement have found themselves in the same ol’ situation. Isolated. Desolate. Craving the glory and victory. There are no freak flags here. Never have been. Just flags stained with the blood of men, women, aliens and outsiders. Now this is not your teenager’s Iron Maiden and if you have been following their dotted journey, even since the 90s, you know that already.”

Did he like it? Click here to read the full review of The Final Frontier.

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Ra Ra Riot – The Orchard

The sophomore effort from Barsuk Records Ra Ra Riot is a step in the right direction. Whereas their debut, The Rhumb Line, borrowed from Arcade Fire, a lot, they are moving in a direction to carve their own sound. On The Orchard, the growing pains are present. And this isn’t necessarily an interesting thing. In moving away from their comfort zone, we are left with a somewhat bland indie pop/rock act working to shed its natural influential tendencies. I suspect good things are in the future from Ra Ra Riot, as they learn more how to be themselves, and start to write Ra Ra Riot songs and records.

That’s a band I want to hear.

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The Lonestar Chain – The Lonestar Chain

Former Buck Jones/current The Cush guitarist/vocalist Burette Douglas evidently missed Texas while he and usual collaborator, wife Gabrielle Douglas spent a decade in Vermont. The Lonestar Chain is the Chico, TX native Burette’s country side project. Always injecting a little twang into his music, whether it was British shoegaze, 60’s influenced pop, or his current spin on psychedelia, The Lonestar Chain is finally pure country from the heart of Burette Douglas and his displaced Texan self. We are given a nice piece of straight country music, with a hint of Uncle Tupelo/The Jayhawks influence in the mix. There is enough North Texas landmarks name-dropped that anyone from these parts can immediately identify with what Douglas is singing about. When was the last time you heard about Jacksboro Highway in a song? Probably never.

The ease with which this music flows makes you wonder if country was his real calling, but mainly demonstrates a side of a musician who has a pure passion for the music he loves and makes. Some days it doesn’t seem like there are enough of those.  Standout tracks include “Abilene”, “Black Horse Acre”, “Don’t Look Back” and the husband-wife duet on “I Stand Corrected”.

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The Silver Seas – Chateau Revenge

As I was doing a little research on Nashville quartet The Silver Seas, I had read a couple of things placing them in a folksy category, (along with the fact that they were formerly known as The Bees) which is not what I heard from their pleasant new record, Chateau Revenge, at all. For the most part, I got a wholly different feel from the record, one that hearkens back to 80’s British soul, reminiscent of Paul Weller’s Style Council period. There is some indie rock and new wave flavor present, but as a whole, this is a nice, bright, upbeat indie rock record. Standout tracks include “The Best Things In Life”, “What If it Isn’t Out There” and the 50’s inspired “Candy”.

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~ by thesynaptic on August 19, 2010.

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