Friday, June 10, 2005

Our Lady of the Highway...

Our Lady of the Highway is one fine band. If you didn't hear their 2004 release About Leaving which was about as perfect an illustration of the lonliness that pervades a heart when one returns to a home that is no longer a home but instead a seemingly random series of disconnected assocations. That record was gentle and beautiful. It was melancholy set to music. You must have it. Full disclosure requires me to say that the kids in the band are friends of mine. I was at their first show. I've seen them change and grow. I've seen singer/songwriter Dominic East become more confident in his craft. So here we are in 2005 and after much hand wringing, financial struggle, line up changes and various assorted challenges that face just about every band trying to play their out of their scene into something a bit bigger the finishing touches have been put upon Beauty Won't Save Us This Year. I posted some early mixes of the songs here in late 2004 and I have to say that I'm blown away by how far the band has taken these songs. Where as About Leaving was rooted in an acoustic alt-country vein, Beauty Won't Save Us This Year has taken a decided turn into the realm of pure pop/rock. This should not be viewed as a negative, at all. East's songwriting continues to mine a territory that stars broken hearts and stiff drinks, but now the weeping seems to be subsumed by an anger that comes out as louder guitars and subtle effects that include keyboards and certain electronic elements. In a perfect world all we'd be arguing about is the marked difference in production between the two records. But since Beauty Won't Save Us This Year currently has no home no one is going to hear it soon. It's unfortunate because this record will have little trouble finding an appreciative audience. The record is currently in the hands of friends like Rogue Wave, so maybe the right people in the right places will notice. In the mean time let's enjoy a couple of songs, down load About Leaving from iTunes, and if you're in the SF bay area see them live.

From Beauty Won't Save Us This Year:

Duet

Parable of Strength

Fine Dancer. Duet with Anna Coogan.

1 Comments:

Anonymous rooney said...

OLOTH are truly one of the best bands in the Bay Area and have been for years. Really nice guys whose time really, really should come soon.

5:23 PM  

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