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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Courtney Chambers

Tales of the Aftermath

Review by Gary Hill

The range here is from hard rock to modern pop, shoegaze and more. This is an effective set start to finish. It also has enough variety to keep from getting stale or feeling redundant.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2015  Volume 6 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Fool in Me

Bluesy hard rock with some country in the mix, this is classy stuff. It’s a slow moving and compelling piece of music. This is both classic and modern.

The Bitter End
The central change here is that the classic elements seem gone. This is a modern rocker that is fairly standard, but also effective.
Love and Music
Here’s another more like modern pop rock. It has some lusher layers of sound. It’s very much the kind of thing that’s at home on modern radio these days.
Forget the Gloom
Alternative rock, country and roots music merge on this number. It’s still a modern pop rock piece, but it’s influences are a lot more classic.
Young Lovers
There’s a bit of a psychedelic, shoegaze kind of sound here, merged with Americana and more. It has a bluesy edge to it, though. There is really a dreamy quality to this song.
Extraordinary Lives
The piano based melody that opens this makes me think of the Beatles a bit. From there, though, it works to more standard modern pop rock. There are some Beatles-like elements over the top of the arrangement at times, though.
Heart of This Man
Piano starts this one, too. The vocals come in over that backdrop, as this is a balladic number. It’s a pretty and poignant piece of music. Other instrumentation does join later to fill out the arrangement, but this remains fairly mellow and slow moving.
Wasting Time
Here’s another more typical piece. This is an energized pop rocker that’s pretty strong. It’s just not all that special or different.
Rush In

An acoustic based, mellower, song, this makes me think of the Beatles quite a bit. There is a country edge to the vocals, though. Other layers of sound fill out the arrangement later. Then it gets into more typical territory as it moves forward.

Winter
Intricate acoustic guitar serves as the backdrop for the vocals here.  Some electric guitar brings layers of sound and some variety later, but the acoustic guitar motif remains the basic concept. There are some back-tracked things at points on this cut, too. This never rises up to the level of rocker, though. Instead it remains mellow and intriguing. It’s actually one of the more “different” and effective pieces on show here.
 
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