The Morning Pages - The Company You Keep CD Review ~ BrooklynRocks: NYC Music Blog

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

The Morning Pages - The Company You Keep CD Review

The Morning Pages - CD ReviewI haven't heard a lot of alt-country that I liked but I enjoyed The Morning Pages debut EP. The EP has a comfortable feel and, according to the band's bio, this disc was recorded on analogue tape. With this, the CD has a raw and warm sound (not over-produced) that can make you forget that you aren't listening to an LP.

This disc is a direct throw-back to the sounds of the 70's classic country-rock bands. The Morning Pages leverages the combination of Grant Maxwell's mornful vocals with Kevin Drost's pedal steel guitar and Alec Higgins' organ playing to bring the sound of the Gram Parsons/Chris Hillman-era Byrds or The Band into the present.

Four of the five songs on this disc are toe-tapping, mid-tempo "The Band"-ish tunes with great guitar work and piano and the one ballad on the disc breaks up the songs nicely. While all the music is solid, the songs are carried by the voice of prinicpal songwriter Grant Maxwell. His voice has the best qualities of the alt-country scene and has none of the rasp or whine of some of his contemporaries (which is a complete turn-off for me). The band carries this energy over to their live set. Here is the link to a six song live set (downloadable, no less) that the band did for HereYa Sessions in July.

All-in-all, I like the direction that the band is heading in with their EP and the tracks that the band laid down in their HearYa session. The Morning Pages looks like a band to watch (and catch live).

It doesn't look like the band has any shows scheduled but here is a link to some live video clips of the band that were filmed late last year. The clips aren't great quality but the band sound great (which gives kudos to the musical chops of the band members).

The Morning Pages MySpace Page