Since 1996

    Your Gateway to Music and More from a Christian Perspective
     Slow down as you approach the gate, and have your change ready....
About Us

Album Reviews
Movie Reviews
Concert Reviews

Top 10
Time Wasters
Contact Us


The Blackstones EP
Artist: The Blackstones 
Label: Indie
Length: 8 tracks / 40:54

Rebuilding is ugly work. In order to refurbish a house, carpenters must often demolish existing structures, breaking down what’s there to make way
for a new vision. The in-between phase with all its dust, debris and unsightly desolation makes the forthcoming beauty hard to imagine. While those who initially see a remodeled space can admire the new look, it’s those who have seen the entire process who truly appreciate the loveliness that emerges. From the murky beginnings of “Hello to War” to the haunting reflection pool pinings of “Home,” vocalist/songwriter Aaron LaMere explores the uncomfortable but necessary rebuilding period both literally and figuratively throughout The Blackstones EP.

Touching on relationship breakdowns, cancer conquerors and hurricane desolation, these eight songs convey the emotional pangs of survival and the
hope of starting anew. Lyrically, LaMere challenges his listener with more ambiguity than affirmation. He has begun to successfully sidestep his
Tremolo Cowboy-era corporate worship choruses in favor of more ambiguous, poetic word pictures: “I love but sometimes feel like a hand-me-down”
(“Hello to War”); “Midnight comes like a forgotten friend / Now come home” (“When You Stay”); “For thirty years I wrestled God, and all of his angel
friends” (“The War of Indians”).

Musically, LaMere and friends are also at an apex: “Wilcohead” experimentalism, playful Beatles interludes and Beach Boyish harmonies accompany the band’s consistently strong, authentic rock ‘n’ roll sound. On this EP, vintage clean guitar lines coexist quite nicely with otherworldly keyboard textures and bendable electronic tones. Still, LaMere alone with his acoustic is incredibly powerful, as in the standout track “3 a.m.,” the time-altering “When You Stay” and the EP’s finale, “Home.”

With an astonishingly deep effort like this, one can only marvel at what is to come from The Blackstones when they take the time to draw up extensive
blueprints for a full-length album.

Recommended if you like Wilco, Tom Petty, Johnny Cash, The Beatles, The Listening.

Greg Adams



 Copyright © 1996 - 2007 The Phantom Tollbooth