April 20, 2011

The Rural Alberta Advantage - Departing (2011)

I was sitting around a large table of folks at the Connecticut Yankee awhile back, greasing the pipes for The Builders and The Butchers and Murder By Death concert at BOTH, when a friend said, "You know a band I think you should check out? The Rural Alberta Advantage." So I did, and here I am writing this review. I have to admit, I was on the fence at first... And the fence was pretty tall and thick. Nils Edenloff's vocals are not exactly welcoming, beautiful or mainstream, but they had me at "Drain the Blood." Again, initially I was riding that proverbial fence regarding Departing, but in the same manner a few listens turned me into an avid fan of Hometowns, I was drawn into the folky, slightly quirky rhythms, nasally vocals and sing-along choruses. As for Departing, "Two Lovers" is great, "Under the Knife" is remarkably catchy, "Tornado '87" is this album's pull-you-in jam much like "Drain the Blood" was on the last album and "Barnes' Yard" makes my foot-drums go crazy. I'm not going to promise that you'll think this album is a winner at first listen, but give it a few spins, and if those high-notes hit a chord, I'm sure you'll become a fan just like me.