Thursday, April 19, 2012

Review: TJ Courtney “Into The Sky” [EP]

From out of Boston, singer/songwriter TJ Courtney takes the classic grunge sound and gives it a modern overhaul on his new powerhouse of an EP, “Into The Sky”. One listen to the first single, “One Day”, and you can just feel the testosterone pumping through your veins. Even better, Courtney channels his angst into urgent messages relevant to the times. “One Day” tackles the impact of human activity on the globe and “Who Are They” reflects on the new obsession with online voyeurism.

The EP is a sonic joy thanks to producer Andrew Dixon (Colbie Callait and Ryan Cabrera) and mixer Mark Needham (The Killers, Neon Trees). The style of music is going to please fans missing the sounds of early Oasis, Soundgarden, and Foo Fighters, but still reel in the younger generation too. Incidentally, the EP features songs co-written by Jason "Space" Smith (Seether) and Waymon Boone (Splendor).

Misleadingly gentle at the beginning with delicate acoustic guitars, the title track soon explodes into a heavy riff fest in a highly engaging and melodic chorus. Courtney’s compelling vocals soar over the music, lifting each song to greater heights. “One Day” follows a similar formula, but incorporates a bit of an Alice In Chains meets Days Of The New feel. The EP closes with a sizzling cover of my favorite Duran Duran song, “Ordinary World”.

In a word, TJ Courtney is evidence that gritty rock can still be melodic without compromising on its ability to rattle your cage. In this context, “Into The Sky” is a win-win situation.

TJ Courtney – Official site.

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