Friday 18 Apr

Dustin Prinz - Eleven

Few musicians take the time to master their instrument in the way that Oklahoma City singer-songwriter Dustin Prinz has; he’s a guitar virtuoso in every sense of the word, and Eleven gives him the chance to show just how far he can push that skill.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0

Horse Thief – Fear in Bliss

Listening to Horse Thief’s previous release — the haphazardly melodramatic Grow Deep, Grow Wild — felt like a chore. Whatever potential the Oklahoma City folk-pop act demonstrated on the EP was obscured behind a formulaic, contrived and ultimately hollow cloud. But it at least offered a glimmer of promise for a band consisting of, frankly, five pretty talented dudes. Critics saw it; the band’s management saw it; its current label, Bella Union, saw it; and its increasingly fervid fan base saw it.
04/08/2014 | Comments 0

Colourmusic — May You Marry Rich

There’s always a sense of danger when debuting songs in a live setting and playing them well. Without having heard the studio versions, expectations are set according to the live incarnations. But capturing the breadth of free-flowing atmosphere and sheer volume on a disc, vinyl or digital file isn’t the easiest thing to do, especially for a band as vociferous as Colourmusic.
04/01/2014 | Comments 0

Em and the MotherSuperiors — Churches into Theaters

As titles go, Churches into Theaters is an apt descriptor for the debut album from Oklahoma City rockers Em and the MotherSuperiors. It’s a reverential record, one that shares the gospel of classic rock, blues and soul but embraces the need to refashion it for modern times, channeling The Dead Weather, Grace Potter and Cage the Elephant along the way.
03/25/2014 | Comments 0

Rachel Brashear — Revolution

Rachel Brashear’s second EP, Revolution, starts with a kick to the shins.
03/18/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Music · Music · The Pretty Black Chains —...

The Pretty Black Chains — Awakening

You’d never know that The Pretty Black Chains very recently used to be a Brit-pop band.

Stephen Carradini July 6th, 2011

“Awakening” is proof that their tansformation into a Led Zeppelin-style rock band was as complete as it was swift.

The act makes it clear from the first second of the album, which kicks off with Derek Knowlton’s heavy riff from “Let Me In” and pours on the guitar from there on out. Fans of the six-string will find much to love in tunes from the fuzzed-out “Lovers” to the ’90s-influenced runs of “Thorny Crown”; the members of the four-piece have become unabashed guitaraholics.

Despite the genre switch, the swagger of frontman Kellen McGugan has not changed, as he still howls and hollers his way through the tunes. The frantic title track is the best example of this, as McGugan alternately preens, roars and whips his voice around. The title track also stands out as a composition, with several distinct parts, tempos and moods. The powerful guitar work, as with everywhere else, drives the song through the changes.

But it’s not all six-string fury; the six-minute “Color of a Tomb” gives a feature to bassist Jonathan Martin. The change-up makes it one of the most memorable on the album, which is saying something: Guitar fanatics of almost any age and preference will find all of “Awakening” admirable. —Stephen Carradini

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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