It is rare that I get a local CD that makes me forget that it came from a local band. A truly great album that wasn’t the product of a world-famous producer and $50,000 budget. But that is what I have playing right now.
I can best sum up Londons Falling’s album Saturday Evening Underground with one word: maturity. The songs are expertly crafted, and the lyrics take you on a righteous journey.
Two things struck me right off the bat. The bass is loud and and the drumming is really tasty. I love it when the bass is in your face, and Nick is a great bass player. And the drums. What fun! I love a good rhythm section and Londons Falling brings it in spades.
But this band is no Primus. The guitars and vocals match the intensity,maturity, and enjoyability of the bass and drums. After listening a few times I was able to appreciate how intricate the guitar layering is. It isn’t a bunch predictable riffs laden with power chords. It seems like every second of the album has a well thought out composition. Every time I listen to a song, I find something new to appreciate.
And Kevin has a gift for vocal hooks. My two favorite songs at this moment are Bombs in Baskets and Return to History. The choruses on these songs stay with you.
The songs are political in nature and they inspire involvement and action, without telling you what to think. It is a rare treat to find a band that sings about political subjects without simply stating their opinions. Kevin gets you thinking. Usually political bands like NOFX don’t get you thinking. You either agree or disagree with them. But your mind isn’t expanded. Kevin’s poetry isn’t self-righteous. Rather, it takes us on a journey searching for righteousness.
My only gripe about the album is that sometimes the drums and vocals compete. I am of the opinion that vocals should always be the clear winner every time on an album, and there are a couple of moments where the drummer should have backed off once he realized that the singer was going to sing in that part of the song.
Here are my ratings, from 1 to 10
Song Maturity: 10
Album Cohesiveness: 9
Sonic Journey: 9
Recording quality: 10
Londons Falling is:
Kevin White: Lead vocals and guitar
Travis Dahl: Guitar and vocals
Nick Rodney: Bass guitar
Brant Bolton: Drums