Merit – Arson Is For Lovers
Record Label – Unsigned/Aux Management
Release Date – December 23rd 2008
People complain a lot nowadays about the lack of any bands with any merit in the scene; bands who care more about their image than their music. Well, here’s one band who don’t subscribe to what seems to be the ubiquitous trend in today’s scene (if it can still be described thus): Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you Merit.
What this female-fronted four-piece from Syracuse, New York, have produced on this, their third album, is very impressive, with the finished product being well-written and highly enjoyable.
Opening with “Cut & Run,” a song to which you could dance but most definitely would not ascribe the ever-more-popular label of “dance rock,” the album starts as it means to go on: well. The title track, “Arson Is For Lovers,” takes the third spot on the record and includes an interesting change-up half way through the song, providing the makings of a strong finish before the next track, entitled “Mourning Dove.” This song is slower & more relaxed, as well as being as good a song as any other on the album.
Lucky number seven, “Tour Memoir,” has probably the grittiest guitar work on the album and, surprise surprise, is lyrically based on touring and the places visited in that time.
“Bring Us The Sun” represents not only the penultimate track, but also what is my favorite song on the record. This track sounds as if it were being poured gently into my ears and soaking into my consciousness, before leading into the closer, “Visible.”
Having enlisted the help of producer John Naclerio (Brand New, Bayside, The Audition), the sound on the album is full, well-rounded, well-mixed and contributes to the record being as interesting as it is, maintaining a consistent sound without being rigid, formulaic or boring in its structure. Arson Is For Lovers has a lot of mainstream appeal without sacrificing any of the values or sound of their previous releases. There isn’t anything particularly stand-out about the music, lyrics or vocals on here, but the three come together to give a very appealing album.
Arson Is For Lovers is available for free download from their website (below)