Members of The Badlees form a new group - The Cellarbirds, with their debut release "Perfect Smile." Over the past twelve years, The Badlees have amassed a large following, particularly in the Mid-Atlantic region; they have sold 250,000 albums; landed two major label recording contracts (Polydor/A&M, ARK 21); scored two top ten radio hits, "Angeline Is Coming Home" and "Fear Of Falling".
A seamless blend of accessibility and integrity. -- Artistdirect.com
The Cellarbirds music is thoughtful, smart and passionate. It's a remarkably cohesive record... (Alan Stout (Knight-Ridder Newspapers)) -- (Alan Stout - Knight-Ridder Newspapers)
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
From the opening guitar strains of the first song, the lyrics let you know immediately that these are songs about the stuff of adulthood. The words seem to be about the reality of standing up to, or in, a world that beats you down, spoken by someone who has been there. They speak to resignation and the acceptance of life's often cruel twists ("I dance upon the weeds to keep them down", "So twisted I've become/ Competing for the sun/ Just keeping everyone in decent clothes" and "So I go the extra mile/ Make your dreams walk single file"), you know, the realities that separate the men from the boys (or the adult from the child). But these songs are not without hope; indeed, they are driving, energetic and intelligent rock/pop tunes, for the most part, and they present a new take on the kind of music that was all over the radio in our younger days (I'm sure bands like The Byrds and The Band would creep into a review by a real, live critic, along with such names as XTC and Tom Petty and REM).
Ringing guitars, upbeat tempos and rhythms and an abundance of melody prevail here, with a smattering of organs and harmonicas to add just enough spice to the mix. Simple but beautiful harmonies decorate the majority of these songs and enough rhythm and tempo changes occur to keep the music interesting without ever becoming too complicated. Some outstanding tracks here include "Uncommonly Blue", "Someone Nice", "Open Ended" (with its exquisite sentiment, "You do for me what hunger does for poetry") and "Time for Pride" (does - "In the end what you won't give away/ The world takes anyway/ I have no time for pride/ I'm tired of me" - sound like your life?). Perhaps most telling of all the things that I can say about this record (all right, I know it's a CD, but I'm old enough to still call them by their real name) is that the bridge from "Happy Home", the album's second track, is deeply reminiscent of and informed by The Loving Spoonful's "Daydream". Enough said, no?
More than anything, this album contains the kind of mature, intelligent pop music that you probably haven't even looked for lately in your life. But remember when you were a teenager and would rush home with the latest album and listen to it over and over again, your heart floating on the gorgeous melodies and your mind captivated by interesting and stimulating lyrics (think Beatles here -- now, I'm not saying this is a Beatles album but if I were a music critic I'm sure such references would be inevitable, with a particular leaning toward the sensibilities of John Lennon).
Don't get me wrong, this is not a perfect album. My personal preference is for a little more bottom end in the mix and the second to last song, "Any Given Day", does not live up to rest of what's here. Beyond this, ten songs that come in at under 39 minutes seems a bit stingy, especially since it seems that these guys can write memorable melodies in their sleep. But these are minor complaints,
This disk has been in my CD player nonstop since I got it and it is still revealing itself and delighting me -- just the way albums did when I was younger. So do yourself a favor and get a copy of this album, put it on and watch as a perfect smile comes to your face.
I can't wait for the box to show, it finally arrives. I shred the cardboard container, to get at it. I am tearing off the cella-fame, while rushing out the back door to my vehicle. Pop this bad boy into the player and head out. I am instantly enthralled, anxious to glean the lyrics and follow along.
This CD has been a constant companion at home and has chauffered me about town, for well over 2 months now. It is an audio means of pleasure and satisfaction for me. The knowledge that my monies were well spent on the skill and creativity, with which these talented musicians have formed a truely masterful disc, is evident in the listening of it. AND MAN HAVE I LISTENED TO IT!!
Can't wait for the next level of tune from these guys.