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Aeroplane, 1929 - The Holy Ghost
|Aeroplane, 1929 - The Holy Ghost|
Released June 21st, 2007
Aeroplane, 1929 is sharp and handsome. Poetic and patriotic. Rustically textured, yet contemporarily visualized. The Holy Ghost, a six-song EP seemingly bent to differ from the religiously skeptical and anti-American, proves to be a timeless venture for the quintet as folk and country-rock is fogged only slightly so that boundaries accommodate the band’s significantly more buoyant and venturous form. The result is nothing short of inspirational, if not subtly preachy in approach. It’s nice to finally find an album of this style that isn’t fragmented from wannabe-singles and filler-extraordinaire. Every song is kept in check with a balanced method met at the middle by acoustic care straight out of the Heartland and traditional rock dynamics that see the direction of the album in a boldly beautiful direction during a few crucial points over the course.
“Locomotives” is your first brush with the band and probably the most caressing. Rounded out by a clashing symphony of horns and violins, it only suits that the song is largely consoling; reflective lyrical panorama and pondside-inspired guitar gyrations. “Pictures flicker past in black and white/I’ve witnessed men’s ideals grow old and die/Like fruit picked long before were ripe/Or left to wither in the cold.” It’s phenomenal in all respects – practically doubling in delight with the outro, previously mentioned, that sounds like an orchestration that could be imagined coming from a Neutral Milk house show in Athens sometime in the summer of ‘98. “Penelope”, the subsequent track, yields less interesting results – filing in the line for sappy, American-ideal based lullabies. “At my bedside I pray the draft doesn’t blow us away/To some distant desert or ocean” It only momentarily sheds light on Aeroplane’s potential for the exploratory when a gleam of restless feedback splits Alex Mazzaferro’s burden of transiting from verse-to-verse into a more appealing undertake. “Hounds at Heels”, tragically located towards the back of the bus, is the band finally (five songs in) breaking the “I’m a lil’ country, I’m a lil’ rock ‘n roll” shell. The snare gets a lot of action in the duration with the distortion pedals, energetic vocal aptitude, and classic-rock solo centered bridges receiving quite a bit of attention as well.
The only major complaint that’ll be pointed out is that the lyrics are often eye-roll inducing. Topics such as talking with a sickly brother about God or conceptualizing Hell in an everyday setting didn’t captivate me in the least, if they were even designed to. It’s usually painless to turn solely to the instrumentation in these cases, but it would have been preferred if church boy notions weren’t so prevalent when Mazzaferro’s lyrics concentrating on the elsewhere are so much more developed – though this point will likely be debatable.
Aeroplane, 1929’s range of influences is, at the best points, jarring. Though getting ahead of yourself in picking this album up exclusively for the thrill of a country-meets-indie rock sex romp would be recipe for sour aftertaste. The Holy Ghost is embedded in the idea of bringing CMT into 40 Watt Club candidacy. This surrenders likely downsides – bumpkin slide-guitar technique, a virtual wheel-of-fortune for cliché Americana topics to be brought up somewhere in the mix, awkward fits for innovation, etc. The EP is a guilty-pleasure of mine, though, because for the first time I had to type the word ‘country’ into the genre-definer of iTunes. Then again, though, how often would you say you’d readily see a guilty pleasure of yours live, undisguised, if they ever found their way to your part of the world? My answer to that is a first, too.
11:22 AM on 11/18/07
love love love them..
great review scott.
03:45 PM on 11/18/07
The band name sounds like a straight rip from the tracklisting of the Neutral Milk Hotel record.
09:53 PM on 11/18/07
great band and great album.
12:55 AM on 11/20/07
These guys are pretty popular around these parts. Good review, Scott.
01:14 AM on 11/20/07
Aw man, I absolutely love some of the lyrics on this EP.
Anyhow, awesome dudes, awesome album, etc. etc. Glad to see them getting some press.
07:04 AM on 11/20/07
every shining time you arrive
played with this band this summer. entrenprenural. (sp?) made money by selling grilled cheese sandwiches before and after the show.
03:10 PM on 11/30/07
ive had to endure this band as an opening act several times now, and it gets more and more painful.
the addition of their alaskan keyboardist wasnt exactly a step in the right direction either
12:33 AM on 02/16/08
i was thinking the exact same thing
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