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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Five AM

Raise The Sun

Review by Gary Hill

This is not the most original band I’ve heard. They are very good, though. Their brand of alternative rock is quite standard, but yet they do it incredibly well. Every song here is strong. It’s that element more than anything else that really makes this band worthwhile. The truth is, this is a potent disc. It makes me wonder what they could do if they took a few chances and pulled their sound out of the range of generic territory.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2009  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Still in Love With You
Here’s a fairly mellow and yet still energized, rather bluesy modern pop rock song. This is catchy and evocative and the vocal arrangement really steals the show.  It gets more energized and powered up as it carries on.
Be Still
Here we get a more balladic cut. This isn’t all that different from the opener, but perhaps a bit more contemplative. This is not earth shattering, highly original stuff. It is, however, quite strong.
Just Say Anything
Another catchy cut this is a fairly moody number. It’s a good track and actually one of my favorites on show here.
Raise the Sun
I actually like this one even better than the previous one. It rocks out a lot harder and it’s just plain scorching. It might well be my favorite cut on show here. 
The Distance
A poignant piano based ballad, this is pretty and a nice change of pace. They energize it with the addition of instrumentation as they carry on. 
Fall Apart
Here’s another that rocks out harder. Once again this is nothing that really breaks out of any kind of boxes, but it’s very strong for the modern alternative rock that it is. 
Every Now and Then
They continue with the rockers. This one is punky and more crunchy than anything we’ve heard to this point. It’s another hard edged jam. It’s also another strong piece of music. 
Lillian
We get another ballad here. This is acoustic guitar based at first and grows gradually. It’s a good cut and a nice change of pace.
Lipstick
Here’s another solid alternative rocker. It is more contemplative and tentative than some of the other music here. 
Sunshine
This acoustic based number is the mellowest cut on show here. It reminds me a bit of Sister Hazel, but with different vocals. It never rises to the level of “rocking” making it stand out from the rest.
Still in Love With You (Video Remix)
As you might guess this is a remix of the album’s opening track.
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