Jack Rabid | Falling Slowly

nine times blue
falling slowly
(Renegade)
I thought I’d enjoy this Atlanta quartet when I saw their name. Hardcore Monkees fans recognize “Nine Times Blue,” an outtake from The Music Box box (The country-folk tune was originally released on Michael Nesmith debut solo LP with his First National Band, 1970’s Magnetic South.) However NTB aren’t new Monkees—they’re modern, mature, rock/power-pop. With Kirk Waldrop’s vocals front and center, they’re in cahoots with the Matthew Sweet/Fountains of Wayne/Crowded House/Gin Blossoms/Jellyfish school of Beatlesesque guitar groups. On their best numbers such as the Badfinger-like “Crazy to Think” (their “Baby Blue?”) and Million Miles (not The Plimsouls), Waldrop and fellow guitarist Greg King are like a ‘10s Jason Falkner and Jon Brion (Grays), making poppy riffs serve developed melodies. Sing-along music can be drab, pre-fab, and as manufactured as hard plastic; or it can have singer/songwriter appeal. This is the latter. (ninetimesblue.net) – Jack Rabid

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