Cricket, Sofa City Sweetheart

Cricket, Sofa City Sweetheart

Ahh…the ability to play your instrument well. Some musicians inspire their listeners with poetic lyrics, some through their unflappable discipline, and some are just hot. Cricket, from Louisville, can play. Fortunately, they also like to show off, and they’ve created a psychedelic monster in Sofa City Sweetheart.

This album sounds at home in the back of a van. Most of the tracks, like the aptly named “Liquid Acid,” balance metal with the groovy to keep the sound afloat somewhere in between; funky metal with frequent acid flashbacks. Suffice it to say that this is a guitar-driven album, and its forms range from the nebulous duels on “Coast off LA” to the more robotic “Carousel.” The drummer sounds like he wants a few extra arms at times, and the bassist holds his grooves pretty easily. This must have been a fun album to record.

Cricket is a jam band at heart, and their instrumental moments are the real treat. “Movie Trailer” has a great melodic breakdown, and “Only the Wind Knows” is nice energizing punch in the ear. At their live shows, they “tend to bleed the songs together into one pulsing blob of music,” apparently, and this album sounds like they’re holding back from doing just that: the freedom and spontaneity of a small, talented group of musicians sharing a stage is a beautiful thing. I would be curious to check these guys out if they ever get off their Kentucky asses and into Texas. Jerks.

Though Cricket displays an arsenal of sounds, they could still use a little variety. The effects mainly show up in solos, resulting in a fairly homogenous album with standout moments. Try and ration those things, eh? The ratio of heavy songs to anything else is off, and some balance would make this CD easier to listen to. Sadly, they have some newer tracks on their Myspace page which seem to be heading into the realm of alternative rock. Cricket, please do the right thing and stick to the road less traveled.

In a word: potential. It’s there, and it consistently pokes its head out from the storm of sounds that is Sofa City Sweetheart, but then pulls right back in. If Cricket manages to control this beast a little more, they have a chance to make some pretty exciting acid jams. Groovy.

(BURNtheCAKE Records; Cricket -- http://www.myspace.com/wearecricket)
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Review by . Review posted Friday, March 14th, 2008. Filed under Reviews.

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