Thursday, March 29, 2012
Multi-platinum rockers Candlebox keep the rock 'n' roll flame alive with their first studio album in nearly four years, “Love Stories & Other Musings”, due April 3. Produced by Ken Andrews (Pete Yorn, A Perfect Circle, Tenacious D, Beck), “Love Stories & Other Musings” features nine new tracks and five bonus tracks, which are re-recordings of some of their biggest hits including "Far Behind", “You”, and "Cover Me."
I must admit I’ve always carried a torch for Candlebox. Sometimes referred to as that “other Seattle band”, these guys never struck me as a grunge outfit, but more of a modern band with classic rock influences. The musicianship is a cut above the rest and Kevin Martin always sings his lungs out with his amazing voice. Best of all, the band knows that a good hook is necessary to make a song memorable, and they can write such melodies without compromising one iota of their rock bravado.
"I haven't felt this way about a release from Candlebox since our first record. The feeling for this record is both refreshing and stimulating," said guitarist Peter Klett. "I can't be more excited to release this music to the fans who have been with us for so long." Kevin Martin adds, "This record…is our music and our love for what a great gift we have been given. 'Love Stories & Other Musings' is a new direction for us and I couldn't be happier to share it with our fans." Fans need not worry – the band doesn’t stray too far from what you are salivating for. The new direction is a natural evolution – an evolution towards even better songwriting. Tighter, more melodious, and more eventful.
You can feel the band’s renaissance in the energetic lead off track, “Youth In Revolt”, which is an anthem in the making and quickly reminds us of the musical power this band can wield. For “Sweet Summertime”, the band downshifts to an infectious mid-tempo beat that is perfect for cruising down the highway with the top rolled down. “Believe In It”, the first single, is another winner – instantly gripping and dripping with inspirational lyrics. As you might surmise from the record’s title, the band showcases its softer side quite a bit on this record. The good news is that Candlebox is a band that can write a genuine love song without it sounding silly or oozing with cheese. There is a sultry and haunting song in “Turn Your Heart Around”, but even better is the aching “Come Home”, which contains some of the best chorus harmonies the band has ever performed. “Baby Love” begins with a tender piano and guitar riff, but kicks into a wonderfully pleasant upbeat song soon enough.
I would have preferred a couple more new rocking tracks rather than the “bonus re-recordings”, but can’t complain because the nine new songs really bring it. Another excellent job from an underrated band. Get the record, and be sure to catch Candlebox on the road beginning April 7 – check their web site for details.
Candlebox – Official site.
Check out “Believe In It”: