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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Dave Rave

Anthology Vol. I

Review by Gary Hill

I have to admit to never having heard of Dave Rave before this collection. Apparently the guy has been making music for a long time with a number of different groups. He has a cool rock and roll meets punk sneer on a lot of his vocals – and that's pure “rawk.” Some of the music here would qualify as punk, others as good rock and roll. While I'd have to say that not all of this works as well as others, the whole album (with the exception of one track) is quite listenable. Here's to more from this talented artist.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2007 Volume 3 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Rock The Party – The Shakers
This hard rocker is a great way to start the disc. It reminds me a bit of the Ramones, but with less of a punk tone and more of an old school garage texture. It's a cool one and a great way to lead off the disc. The drop back to just percussion for a vocal segment is a nice touch.
Baby It's True – The Shakers
A more bouncing rock and roll texture leads this off. For some reason the vocals at times make me think of Fred Schneider's work in the B-52's. Musically this feels a lot like early Beatles. The guitar solo on this is particularly tasty.
Out The Door – The Shakers
Although this feels like it could be a ballad at first, it shifts out to a fast paced rocker with echoes of surf music in the main riffs. This is definitely roots rock based heavily in Jerry Lee Lewis and early Beatles. The guitar solo has “Chuck Berry” written all over it.
Shake Some Action – The Shakers
Bouncy and fun, this is another tasty rocker. It's got a killer classic texture that's part punk and part old school rock and roll.
Do Anything – The Shakers
A more melodic sound leads this off. The music here is more acoustic based, with a classic rock song, but the vocals are similar to the others in texture. This is a nice change of pace and comes across as a catchy, accessible number. The guitar solo is especially tasty. There is a cool little Latin segment that serves to end this.
Let's Face It – The Shakers
Bouncy and fun this isn't far in style from something by The Knack. It's a good rocker that's quite infectious.
Special Dedication – The Shakers
Led by percussion, when this comes in it feels a lot like Tommy James and The Shondells. It's a cool rocker with a fairly stripped down arrangement. This is one of my favorites on the set.
Can't Stop Shakin' – Dave Rave and The Trouble Boys
Raw and cool, this one is all good time rock and roll.
Fun, Booze & Corvettes – Dave Rave and The Trouble Boys
Here we get another tasty slab of raw, punky roots rock. It's another cool cut, but not really a standout.
Dance With Your Doll – Teenage Head
Just when we really needed a change up, we got it! This is a frantic, hard edged rocker that really smokes. I love the catchy riff to this one. It's another that reminds me just a little of The Ramones.
Let's Shake – Agnelli and Rave
Percussion leads off here. Then acoustic guitar bounces in with a jumping little arrangement that just reeks vintage. This is a fun little piece of retro jamming. The keys and overall sound are delicious. This is another of my favorites.
Pure Honey – Dave Rave
With a bit more modern texture, this one feels like 1970's hard rock. They drop it to a stripped down arrangement for the verses. It reminds me a bit of The Sweet. It's another good track and a change of pace, but not a standout.
Weight of the World – The Dave Rave Group
This has a very accessible texture and the main riff reminds me a bit of “Bend Me, Shape Me.” That said, this song doesn't really resemble that one. This is more of a melodic, anthemic ballad with a very classic rock texture. It's just that the chording makes me think of that other number.
When Patti Rocked – The Dave Rave Group
A slower dramatic approach is laced with psychedelia on the intro. This is more melodic and sedate than a lot of the other material here. It is also one of my favoirte pieces on the set.
Mr. Silver Tongue – The Dave Rave Conspiracy
This one has more of a classic 1970's rock sound to it. It's another strong cut and another highlight of the disc. I like this one a lot.
Dreamin' After the Movies – Agnelli and Rave
A rather odd acoustic guitar droning leads this one off. As other instruments enter it has a bit of a psychedelic tinge to it. This is another of the standouts of the CD. Part of the quality here comes from the great dramatic atmosphere and nearly mysterious texture. Part of it comes from the layers of vocals that appear from time to time. Part of the charm comes just from the variety. In fact, this is one of the most unique cuts on the set.
So Invisible – Lauren Agnelli and Dave Rave
This is stripped down roots rock. It feels a bit amateurish to me. So much so that I have to say I'd hit skip on this one. I hear echoes of The Shaggs here.

Everyday Magic – The Dave Rave Group
After a cool riff brings this in, they kick it up into the song proper. This is a potent rocker, but doesn't really stand out from a lot of the other stuff. That said, there is one section that feels a bit like older Rolling Stones. That's a nice touch as is the tasty guitar solo that follows it.
Madeleine Says – The Dave Rave Group
I hear the Stones on the music to this one, too, but definitely not the vocals. This one works a bit better than some of the other material, partly due to its nearly psychedelic chorus and some interesting changes.
Love Fades – The Dave Rave Group
Rocking out harder than a lot of the stuff on the disc, this is another standout. It has a killer classic rock texture, blended with more modern sounds. This thing really rocks!
Nicki – Dave Rave & The Crashtones
This killer blues rocker is my favorite track on the disc. It's got some Cream in the mix, but also some Led Zeppelin and even some early Rush. This thing is a really strong cut. It drops back to a more stripped down arrangement on the verses, but is raised up for some dramatic jamming for the choruses. There is no better way to end this set.
 
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