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Driving East - The Future of the Free World is Riding... Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 7.75
Musicianship 7
Lyrics 3
Production 8.5
Creativity 2.75
Lasting Value 7
Reviewer Tilt 8.5
Final Verdict: 64%
Member Ratings
Vocals 8.25
Musicianship 8
Lyrics 6.5
Production 8.75
Creativity 7
Lasting Value 8.75
Reviewer Tilt 9
Average: 80%
Inside AP.net

Driving East - The Future of the Free World is Riding...

Reviewed by: Praetor (01/15/08)
Driving East - The Future of the Free World is Riding on This One
Record Label: The Militia Group
Release date: January 15, 2008 (digital), April 15, 2008 (physical)

I like pop music. Yeah, I dig pretty much every genre, and as much as I like to pretend to be about a thousand times more musically sophisticated than I really am, I have a gut feeling that the genre I get the most enjoyment out of will always be pop. I mean, you just can't sing along to Godspeed You! Black Emperor, you know? But I digress. You see, here’s the thing: Driving East make pop music. Unashamed pop music. Vocalist Barrett Mullins has no problem singing out lyrics of love and loss in his high, nasally (but not too nasally) voice, and between you and me, I have no problem with it either. Why? Because it’s just too damn enjoyable to shrug it off as just another pop album.

The album kicks off on a high note with the simply titled “Hey.” “She puts on a dress that he took off the night before / And stumbles through the maze of empty bottles on the floor / And when her head starts swelling, the shame sinks in / That she never even knew his name / And when her hands stop shaking, the blood is thin / And she will do it again and do it again,” sings Mullins in the first verse. Okay, so he’s no Elliott Smith, and yeah, this subject matter has been covered in about every other song ever, but by your third (or fourth (or fifteenth)) listen, I guarantee you will know all the words and will be singing along, no matter how ashamed you are. “Come On, Come On” was found on their previous self-titled EP in completely unchanged form, but Driving East know what most bands don’t: if it’s not broken, then don’t fix it. “Sing While You Can” is the obligatory, yet somewhat convincingly executed, “growing up” song. “Backseat” has about as much subtlety as a sledgehammer and about as many sexual innuendos as Superbad.

It’s only January, but I have confidence that “Blue Eyes” will remain one of the catchiest songs of the year come December. Don’t let the first seven or so seconds throw you off – this is no lame, cheesy ballad. Whatever you’ve been pimping lately, whether it be Rosetta or Fall Out Boy, once you hear Mullins’ smooth voice singing “Goddamn these bright, blue eyes / They’re a perfect disguise / And you’re hanging on every word,” you’ll be as hooked as I am.

I feel like Driving East deserve to make a better exit than final track “Away.” Somewhere between the children’s choir, and lyrics like “We are the kids that won’t stop believing / We are the kids that won’t be ignored,” I realized that Driving East had unfortunately fallen victim to the appeal of the kind of album closer that very few bands can pull off. Oh, well, nine out of ten ain't bad.

So in a nutshell, this album is about 0% risk and 100% shameless fun. There are no fifteen-minute epics or anything of the sort (the longest song stops quite shy of four minutes.) No, what makes Driving East so appealing is they know they’re a pop band that churns out hook-filled tunes and don’t try to be any different. By embracing, and not running away from their roots, Driving East have created a genuinely fun record.

Recommended if You LikeAll Time Low, Cartel, cotton candy, not taking music too seriously

LinksAP.net Profile | Website | MySpace | Buy on iTunes
 
Displaying posts 1 - 10 of 10
07:49 PM on 01/19/08
#2
Adrian Villagomez
West of the World
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I dig the casual tone of this review.
10:04 PM on 01/19/08
#3
TellYourFriends
Juan Día
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Nice review John. I really liked their iTunes four song EP, so I'm just waiting to get the physical copy of this one. Can't wait to sing along. Haha
03:51 AM on 01/20/08
#4
Mattx
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As I posted in the other review, compared to the EPs this album felt disappointing. This isn't a bad album but i'd put it this way, if you have the EPs especially the self-titled digital EP, (from which three tracks are directly taken) then you've heard the best stuff already with the rest of the album being somewhat average in comparison.

On the other hand if you've not heard the band before then you'll probably like this a lot more. Either way I suggest you check out their original A Black Eye or a Broken Heart EP to hear some of the best material they've produced.
05:09 AM on 01/20/08
#5
Praetor
as we melt, let's make no noise.
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I dig the casual tone of this review.
:woot: Thanks.
As I posted in the other review, compared to the EPs this album felt disappointing. This isn't a bad album but i'd put it this way, if you have the EPs especially the self-titled digital EP, (from which three tracks are directly taken) then you've heard the best stuff already with the rest of the album being somewhat average in comparison.

On the other hand if you've not heard the band before then you'll probably like this a lot more. Either way I suggest you check out their original A Black Eye or a Broken Heart EP to hear some of the best material they've produced.
Well, to each their own, but I still dig this a lot more than A Black Eye Or A Broken Heart.
Nice review John. I really liked their iTunes four song EP, so I'm just waiting to get the physical copy of this one. Can't wait to sing along. Haha
Thanks, man. You definitely won't be disappointed, you'll be singing along a lot, I promise.
08:20 AM on 01/20/08
#6
josh8282
I feel so L.M.N.O.P.
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on the review John.
I have yet to listen to this, but I can see that I'm gonna enjoy it.
12:50 PM on 01/20/08
#7
bailmeout13
It could be a bowling site.
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Nice review. I have given the album only one listen all the way through and I really liked it.
02:41 PM on 01/20/08
#8
Blake Solomon
Leave a one-way note.
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parentheses inside a parentheses? That's what I'm talking about!
03:21 PM on 01/20/08
#9
Adrian Villagomez
West of the World
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parentheses inside a parentheses? That's what I'm talking about!
haha, you would like that.
04:24 PM on 01/20/08
Praetor
as we melt, let's make no noise.
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parentheses inside a parentheses? That's what I'm talking about!
I quoted you to respond, but got distracted by the hilarity that is your avatar.
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