Monday, June 17, 2013

The Connells Still Life 1998

The Connells produced this perfect slice of rock and roll. I don't know how or why or where they came from. I must have read a review somewhere that caused me to buy this gem. I never looked back. It is, for me at least, a perfect rock record. There aren't that many.

The big mid-tempo rocker Dull, Brown And Gray kicks things off in fine style. The Leper has some great guitar work, and there's a Stones/Petty/Springsteen vibe throughout this song and many others. Bruised is another mid-tempo gem with an amazingly hooky chorus and a fine guitar riff. Curly's Train offers a brief respite from hard rocking with country-swing-pop featuring jangly piano to good effect. Gaunlet features mellow verses and a big ballad chourus, and sweet lyrics. "If you stick around this time, you might be somebody, I'll even watch the van for you while you play". Glade is another good solid rocker with multiple vocal parts and a crazy rockin' break. The first half ends with Soul Reactor, a med-tempo rocker that sounds like Nils Lofgren at his best, and features a three-guitar lead break that is smoking, and another great chorus.

The title track brings Tom Petty to mind, and the chorus has a poignant catch in "But this still life has it's virtues". Crown is just mid-tempo heaven with a big guitar sound reminiscent of Matthew Sweet's Girlfriend album. Circlin' is a quick-paced Stonesy rocker with entertaining guitar interplay and yet another hook-filled chorus! You have to like the title of Gonna Take A Lie, and it lives up to the expectations with hard fast rock and a great chorus. I know I keep saying it. But this record contains nothing but fantastic choruses on every song. Queen Of Charades is a sweet, gentle ballad that sounds like the it should be the last song, until Pedro Says brings the instrumental equivalent of the chillin' closing credits music after an in-your-face soundtrack.

It's classic. 

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