Most helpful positive review
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Sophisticated Sophomoric Excellence
on September 28, 2011
Carolina Liar has been a band that has stayed just under the radar. They have not grasped stardom as other trendy bands and it's shame. Their first album Coming To Terms (2008) seemed destined for radio and rightfully should have gained popular status. It might have been their marketing that restrained their stardom because their name does not hold a lot of credence in the rock world. For those just discovering Carolina Liar, they will remind many of European influenced rockers like The Killers (especially from Hot Fuss) or even some of Coldplay's material. Yet, I never like to compare or give any labels to bands due to it always overwhelming new listener's judgments.
Coming To Terms was a great album, but showed signs of debut inexperience that Wild Blessed Freedom (2011) does not fall victim to. It's almost a continuation of Coming to Terms in regards to it's feel, but it is more polished and adds some pop influence among it's alternative rock roots. The lyrics are smart and the melodies are placed exactly where they should be.
1.) Miss America - 3.5/5 - Carolina Liar has always been a band that seems to hold much pride in their lyrics. They never seem to get lazy in their lyrics because it has always been evident that each sentence has meaning and substance. Miss America is exact proof of their intention. It is obviously about not only America itself, but to females as well. It holds a double meaning if one were to listen to the lyrics carefully. The choruses and bridges are fit for any pop record, however, this is alternative rock music the way it's meant to be. Even if the symbolism has been done (maybe even overused), it's a great song.
2.) No More Secrets - 4.5/5 - This song has a bit more pop influence than their first album offered. However, for those who judge a song because it does have pop appeal should know that Carolina Liar has not lost their edge, they have perfected it. Therefore, the song being "pop" is only pop because its catchy chorus and bridge that seems fit for radio, but not as a #1 song.
3.) Drown - 3/5 - The first single of the album. It's a good song, but could have been just another song on the album. There doesn't seem to be any part of the song that differentiates it from others, save for the lyrics. They are meaningful. Yet, speaking on "single" terms, it doesn't seem to be as radio friendly as others on the album.
4.) Me and You - 4/5 - When it comes to relationships and women, Carolina Liar has never shied away from using them as topics in their songs. Obviously, Me and You is a reference to a relationship. It's a great track that shows it's greatness in its bridges and choruses. Seems like it could have easily been on their first album in regards to it's lyrics.
5.) Beautiful People - 5/5 - The first song that differentiates itself from others. The vibe is dark and the lyrics tell a story of seduction and heartbreak. The music and instrumentation seem to go to another level for the band on this record. It's a slower song, but don't expect it to be romantic. One of my favorite songs on the album.
6.) King of Broken Hearts - 4/5 - This track seems to follow Beautiful People perfectly. It continues the song of "heartbreak," but adds more of an upbeat vibe to it. It's a song of redemption from a broken heart. The way of getting over it are told within in the lyrics beautifully. A great song.
7.) I Don't Think So - 5/5 - Lyrically, this is another gem. Musically, it's a gem as well. It sounds like a perfectly written poem that has substance worth discovering. One of the best songs on the album.
8.) Daddy's Little Girl - 3.5/5 - The first "dance" song on the album. It seems to come out of nowhere compared to the track before it. However, it works. "Daddy's little girl is dirty on the floor/she's dancing/she's dancing." The lyrics will remind anyone of the classic story of a girl who might not be as innocent as she presents herself to be. There are many of them in clubs and bars across the world and it seems as if everyone knows at least one. But it has more to say than just a story of a girl. It's a song about letting lose and independence.
9.) Feel Better Now - 4/5- This is a track that will remind many of their song from their first LP, called "Better Alone." The vibe of the song has The Beatles or even U2 as a influence hue which gives the track a nostalgic feel, but explodes about 2 minutes into it with the band taking it to their own heights.
10.) Never Let You Down - 3.5/5 - This track has a bit of a stadium rock vibe to it that only arrives during it's chorus, but feels more controlled and restrained throughout the verses. It definitely sounds more rock than most of the album's offerings.
11.) Salvation - 3/5 - The lyrics of Salvation propels it into a song that is much better than an average song from the band. The chorus seems to be a bit off, in respect to it's generic hints. But the lyrics hold it up.
12.) All That Comes Out of My Mouth - 4.5/5 - The second "dance song" and maybe the most pop inspired track on the album. The vibe is infectious. It has the potential to a smash on the radio. The only thing that holds it back from being the best song on the album is the lyrics and edited chorus that seems to be more of a distraction than anything else. Carolina Liar fans from the past might not be too proud of their direction on this song, but no one can say it isn't catchy and does exactly what they wanted it to do. Having at the end of the album might be a hint as to what it to come from the band in the future.
Wild Blossom Freedom is a very solid alternative rock album. Carolina Liar fans will love it and new fans will enjoy its broad range of vibes and meaningful lyrics. It is one of the better albums of the year. Download a couple of songs to see for yourself. Chances are after listening to a couple of the tracks, the entire album will be in your collection.