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CD REVIEW: The Red – Burn
By Ann Klein - 01/04/2005 - 11:43 PM EST

Artist: The Red
Album: Burn
CD Review: I have a feeling this is a really good band. I hear some really creative ideas and good melodies/harmonic sensibility/willingness to experiment within the confines of pop. But I can’t hear the vocals enough at the top of cd. And there are things in the rhythm section that are jerky which seem to get in the way of the songs. These guys want to be great musicians and their ambition is tremendous, but some of the compositions are too advanced for either the production budget or their level of playing. Not to say they aren’t good players – they are, but some of the stuff they are trying to do is not simple and I think the rhythm section tries to do a little too much. I’m not suggesting changing the writing, but perhaps simplifying the playing would make these songs stand out a lot more.

All that said, I think there’s some really good writing on this disc. Track #6, “I Will” is a great example of where this band succeeds. It starts with a simple acoustic guitar/vocal and stays really simple through the chorus, which only has background vocals added, then a sax sneaks in with a great little melody, which gets you into the second verse very well, at which point cymbals and more guitars help the 2nd verse stand out from the 1st. 2nd chorus, the whole band is in, playing very simply and straightforward. Good for the anthem like nature of this song. And it keeps on building incredibly well, until the very end, which gets quiet and builds up again. It held my interest all the way through. This band knows the power of dynamics. They would be wise to cop some James Brown grooves to the millisecond, just for the art of groove.

I like where they are coming from too. The Red is really committed to playing music and are ever mindful of the state of music industry. I would love to see where they go in the next couple of years. Definitely check out their website: http://thered.com, particularly the first entry on the press page. An interesting place to be…



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