Friday, April 23, 2010

Model Stranger - Dreams & Bones Album Review

Chicago natives Model Stranger are playing the Cubby Bear in Wrigleyville Saturday evening for a CD release show. Their latest effort Dreams & Bones is their best work to date. I attended the listening party a few weeks back and enjoyed the hell out of the record in a loud, crowded room. I've since gotten my hands on a copy of the record and the personal time I've spent with it has only solidified my first impression: these boys have a possibly career changing record on their hands. The 9 track LP doesn't really begin, it just starts. Does that make sense? Think of Neil Young's "Like a Hurricane" (not comparing songs, just the way it's rockin' right off the bat). "She Don't" sets a nice tone for the rest of the record with it's huge vocals and soaring guitar solo's. "Turn of the Century" is a song that appeared on their EP, A Boy and His Crown, but it has been re-recorded (analog baby! these guys don't mess around) in superior form. While this record feels nothing like the EP, listening to the song amongst this batch of tunes makes me wonder how it ever fit anywhere else (pay attention to the keyboard, it's as if it's floating along with the rest of the music, a really nice touch). "Eyes Half Open" is a monster of a song.  From the filthy guitar riff to the hazy lyrics, this track just f*cking rocks. The almost cult like title track closes the album on a very memorable note with a searing riff and beat to match. Front man Stephen Francis eerily sings "We are made, we are made, we are composed of dreams and bones"  If lemmings listened to music, the song "Dreams & Bones" is what they'd listen to while walking over the edge. Chilling stuff.

What it comes down to for me is that Model Stranger writes great rock and roll. They're capable of writing songs you want to sing along with at the top of your lungs and they're also capable of writing the softer ballad that quiets the room. It's near impossible to not draw comparisons to many great classic rock bands; from their sound, to their recording methods (again, all analog!) to the way they look, these dudes might own a DeLorean.

If you haven't already checked these guys out clear your schedule for Saturday night (4/24) and come out to the Cubby Bear in Wrigleyville. They're always playing in the Chicago area and I assure you, they are a real treat live. On top of their great original tunes they always throw in some excellent covers and it's not uncommon for their sets to go for three plus hours. Model Stranger will take the stage at 11:00 pm on April 24th. Chicago native acts Verona Red, 20 Mark Helga, The Flavor Savers and Cavalry will also be on the bill. Tickets for the show are available for $8 presale and $10 the day of show on Ticketmaster.


Anonymous said...

I think this band rocks! Great find. How did you hear of them?

Jason said...

Friend of a friend of a friend I suppose. They do indeed rock.