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CD REVIEW: Friendly Fire - America's Love
By Ben Ohmart - 05/21/2007 - 10:34 AM EDT

Artist: Band: Friendly Fire
Genre: Rock
CD Review:
A powerful band, I think, suffering from limited production values. Okay, let's get the negatives over with quickly..... The whole cd sounds either live or far away from whatever microphones they were using. Not THAT far away. But it could be cleaner. The other thing I'm slightly disappointed about is that the range of writing/performing isn't as huge as I'd like from a band obviously so talented. A few listens finds my mind sloshing many of the songs together.

That said, there are Far more positives to push. Great guitar work, powerful female vocals from singer/writer Michelle Borealino. Also, the whole point of this album is honoring the vets of Nam. That war that was never popular. People didn't know whether to cheer or shit on the heroes coming back. Friendly Fire attempts to show all sides of the argument, sometimes with heavy statements, other times with perceptive beauty in layered tranquility.

The real stand out song is 'If You're Ever Going My Way'. I listen to this again and again, whether the cd's playing or not. It will stick in your head, the way the lyrics graft themselves to the music like eternal lovers that can't separate. And there's a boogying guitar riff that Richard O'Brien could've written for Shock Treatment.

I'm also partial to 'America's Love', which starts off softly, but edges in a thoughtful bass and drums after a moment. A good melody here makes up for the 'live' sound.

'Welcome Home (Resting Place)' is Neil Young, baby. A strong song with interesting bass and lyrics that need to be said.

The whole thing's acoustic rock with a twinge of country, a pinch of 70s bad girl, and a whole bootful of attitude, for once on the side of right.


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