Thursday, September 16, 2010

New Release: The Gracious Few

 Release Date: September 14, 2010
Label: Questionable Entertainment

 Anybody remember that old band, Live, from way back in the 90s?  With numerous radio hits (Selling the Drama, I Alone, All Over You, Lightning Crashes, Lakini's Juice, Turn My Head, The Dolphins Cry, just to name a few) spanning three or four solid albums, Live was a 90s mainstay.  What happened to them after The Distance To Here?  I don't know.  I never listened to anything from V on.  I think I heard V on a road trip way back in the day, and thinking it was pedestrian.

Well, apparently what happened, and don't quote me on this (quote Wikipedia instead), is that everybody in the band got sick of the lead singer, Ed.  They said he signed something unilaterally or something, and long story short, they can no longer be on the same stage with him.  So Chad Taylor, Chad Gracey, and Patrick Dahlheimer from Live got together with Kevin Martin and Sean Hennesy from Candlebox, and there you have it.  The Gracious Few.

This supergroup entered the scene with very little fanfare (either that, or I just haven't been paying attention to the correct media outlets).  Linkin Park, Robert Plant, Brandon Flowers, and Weezer all released albums the same day, so it is of little surprise that this one slipped under the radar.  Anyhow, here is the track list (favorites bolded):

2Honest Man4:13
3Guilty Fever3:07
4The Few3:55
5The Rest of You4:02
6Crying Time5:29
7Silly Thing4:29
9What's Wrong4:37
11Nothing But Love5:28
13All I Hear4:32

My initial impression is that this CD rocks.  It has energy, it has rhythm, it is dynamic.  It is not overly technical, with the guys preferring a good jam over a lightning fast guitar solos.  One should think that, because the band consists of the remnants of Live, that it would be a fairly subdued album, with a few heavy tracks scattered here and there, but mostly mellow.  It is not like that at all... This is bona fide hard rock.  Indeed, this might be the best straight up rock album I've heard this year.  This is the album that demonstrates how good music can be without breaking any new ground.

So, what does this album mean for the future?  I don't know what the Candlebox situation is.  To be honest, I've never really followed that band.  As far as Live is concerned, with The Gracious Few on the job, will anybody be missing Ed and Live?  Ed who?

Here is a video for your fun and enjoyment:


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