Sunday, 17 August 2014
REVIEW: THE GASLIGHT ANTHEM-GET HURT
New Jersey Devils.
Hurting for some new music? Then its time to get some more anthems ignited by Gaslight. The Springsteen sons of New Jersey will never leave their town for the bright lights, big city of New York like the Brooklyn Nets. Leading man and iconic singer of a new, influential generation Brian Fallon is to late night N.J. bars what Jimmy Fallon is to late night, N.Y.C. T.V. Now it's time for some thank you notes. Following their cult 'B-Sides' greatest hits we have the return of that ''59 Sound'. The Jersey boys who reinvented 'American Slang' and then engraved it in their 'Handwritten' John Hancock that John Lee Hooker would be proud of are back with their fifth season. Forget 'got milk', it's time to 'Get Hurt' with their new upside down heart artwork, red and white with soulful blue album. This is one straight shot of whiskey that will have you begging for a chaser. As Brian inks new songwriting engravings like the artwork on his sleeves he may as well have a packet of smokes up those short shirt shoulders. This is the album where the boys come into their own. With the bosses blessing and high hopes in their classic car they muscle the steering wheel to a new direction and its pure American beauty in all its raw and real like that girl sitting atop of the new Springsteen vinyl.
Still that's enough Bruce. Right now its all about Brian and his boys. You can hear that from the classic drum roll and rip roaring guitar opening of 'Stay Vicious' that is the hallmark harder edge of this band but dialled up to 11. As Fallon sings "I feel just like a murderer", he goes all Sid Vicious in a punk explosion that shoots like a Sex Pistol as he sings "and I still love rock and roll/and I'll still call somebody baby", it's clear its still Brian even with some dynamic distortion on his distinctive drawl. It's just a new era for this band of today that show they're no longer the new generation but what's happening right now. Inspired by the 'No Code' of legendary, cult rockers Pearl Jam and recorded partly in the country of America's musical home in Nashville, this groundbreaking record for the band is a mix of rock and rolls greatest genres. Still even the darker and more grunge it gets the boys still keep it on the headlights illumination of the road of America's heartland. You can hear that undeniably on the impossible to resist hook of the single sure '1,000 Years' or the hidden atmospheric beauty and depth of the title track that is then followed by the beautifully wrote and beat 'Stray Paper' and the 'Helter Skeleton' which is the Beatles bones of a new fab four...or even a fantastic one in this Marvel comic-book age. The boys stretch their sound further 'Underneath The Ground' as Fallon sings "That's enough, my man, it's time to clap our hands/Call the papers up tomorrow, say we did the best we can/Cause our doctor's in the hospital, the poet just laid down/There's one good man I know, and he can't talk right now."
"Should I take your red, blues and cocaine" the singer continues and asks on the lead, lead strong single 'Rollin and Tumblin'' that's bound to strike a chord with Laurence Fishburne's Morpheus from 'The Matrix'. After the rocking 'Red Violins' play things get real classic on 'Selected Poems' where the seriously underrated and sensational songwriter waxes poetry on vinyl while lamenting with introspection that "nothing stays the same". 'Aint That A Shame' indeed that continues this creative collections new direction before the soul-wrenchingly beautiful 'Break Your Heart' that isn't just among this band or the state of New Jerseys best, but one of modern day rocks most inspired and deep in a modern day industry desperately in need of both characteristics in the charts. As the man who recently went through some personal powerful problems sings "if you knew how I loved you/if I showed you my scars/if I played you my favourite song/lying here in the dark" you can almost here the tears. This is a real man and a real band exposing his soul in a day and age where most young men would feel ashamed to do so. Those in need of some catharsis from the old healer of music may find solace in this,even if it takes us to slower 'Dark Places' before waking and lifting us up with some upbeat rocking hooks. There is 'Sweet Morphine' over sweet sounds that any legendary rockers would be proud of from these young legacy makers. From Springsteen to Dylan you can bet the greats will be tuning this into the airwaves of their radios as they hit the highways. From the 'Nebraska' and Dylan harmonica of 'Mama's Boys' all the way to the haunting 'Halloween'. This fall has got its uprising album earlier than Christmas to alleviate any seasonal change or Del Ray summertime sadness. The record may have changed but the band stay the same and continues their last two album tradition of finishing strong on a slow but amazingly atmospheric cut that shows the last is the deepest. 'Have Mercy' follows 'Slang's' 'We Did It When We Where Young' and 'Handwritten's' 'National Anthem' of Gaslight calling for "the holy ghost" and all the soulful spirit of four young boys from Jersey who made it as men. Amen! TIM DAVID HARVEY