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Halfway to Gone | review | rock | Lollipop

Halfway to Gone

(Small Stone)
By Brian Varney

Though this album will apparently be Halfway to Gone's last as a full-time thing (thanks to the usual day-to-day stuff, the band has downshifted into part-time status), it finds the band traveling at the top speed established by previous full-lengths. If this is the sound of a band slowing down, it's a band that chose to do so by slamming on the brakes while traveling at full speed.

If you loved the band's first two releases, you'll certainly be delighted by this one as well. This album's appeal is subtler and less immediate than its predecessors, but I usually find the albums that I end up liking the most take a few spins to totally sink in, so I've got high hopes for this one. The band's muscular, surprisingly-full-sounding-for-a-three-piece sound roars as astoundingly as ever, and Lou Gorra's throaty howl forcibly exorcises the demons of life's frustrations that inspire most great rock and roll.

When attempting to describe Halfway to Gone's sound, the initial impulse is to use the word "Southern." Surprising for a group of New Jersey boys. They did a straight cover of a Marshall Tucker Band song on their last album, and it was really good. These fellas also know how to jam the standard rock elements together to form an unforgettable song, and they do it consistently. The disc opens with the magisterial "Turnpike," and I was hooked around the one-minute mark. If you discover similar results, you're home, because there are plenty of other barbeque sauce-slathered delights to be had within.
(PO Box 02007 Detroit, MI 48202)

   


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