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Aural Pleasure Review

We Leave at Midnight: 'We Leave at Midnight'

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If you took Crosby, Stills & Nash and overdubbed them the way the Beatles recorded "Because," added the Band, Pet Sounds-era Beach Boys, and a pinch of doo-wop and blended it all with the most pop-friendly yet artsy sounds you can find from the '70s through the '90s, you're only scratching the surface of We Leave at Midnight's sound (full disclosure: drummer Chuck Kerr is the Current's art director). As is the case with Blowing Trees (another terrific local band with a different sound but equally artistic ambition), at times the packaging, sonic landscapes, and sophistication of WLAM are stronger than what they actually deliver song-wise. Except on album opener "Thump the Clouds" (a near-perfect arrangement that deserves more than a simple fade-out) or the keyboard-fueled "My Tito," there are too many moments when a song is about to explode into a killer hook but the band takes an experimental turn into psychedelia that stops it in its tracks. Yet, they always return things to planet earth with skilled musicianship and the best vocal harmonies in town. Singer-songwriter/guitarist/vocal arranger John Dailey and his boys aimed high and came up with an instant local classic that may require several listens but sooner or later crawls under your skin.

 

★★★★ (out of 5 stars)

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