Thursday, March 3, 2011

What We're Listening To - The Rural Alberta Advantage's Departing

What I found so captitvating about The Rural Alberta Advantage's deubt album Hometowns was that a band could capture so much emptiness and lonliess with lyrics and sound, but still manage to be outsized pouring out my speakers. Every song seemed deliberately sparse, with what seemed like driving drums and little else. It was stunning, a crystal clear picture of the bleakness of Alberta, and what it must be like to fall in love, breakup and wish you had that someone back again.

With Departing they've filled out some of the space a little bit, with more pianos here and there, backing vocals and harmonies rounding it all out. But still remaining are strident songs about love, lonliness, and loss. "Our love will hold you tight or tear us apart tonight" sings Nils Eldenloff on Under The Knife. It's convincing, and you believe it.

All the songs are gems, but there are some real standouts. The song writing on North Star puts you in the car on the pitch black road, looking for that star to guide you home and back to his heart. Stamp is just a rail train of percussion that won't stop.

Departing's sparseness, like Hometowns, is its most winning feature. Truth: less is more with The Rural Alberta Advantage.

Check out the songs North Star and Stamp at the The RAA's website

Buy The RAA's Departing from Saddle Creek Records

Buy Departing from the Amazon mp3 Store

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