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Blue October - 'Sway' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/cc/e5/52/blue-october-sway-86-1388619758.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     January 01, 2014    
 
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A highly satisfying listen.

Blue October, the American post-grunge band, formed in 1995 by the Furstenfeld brothers (Jeremy and Justin) and Ryan Delahoussaye return with the powerful and emotional 'Sway', their seventh album to date and first since the extremely maudlin (some would suggest even painful) 'Any Man In America' (2011), although it was still a commercial success in America, making the Billboard Top 10 albums.

Even if they have not fully recovered their hard rock sensibilities of yore, lead singer Justin appears to have fully exorcised his past demons, and delivers a wonderful performance across a 56 minute album packed with a very diverse selection of thirteen songs chosen from about 60 that were available. Beginning with the short, acoustic, but oh-so-sweet 'Breathe, It's Over' and the life-affirming, smile-inducing up-beat title track, the album soon envelops the listener with its charms and the quality pop/rock 'Angels In Everything' maintains the offensive, bounding along gracefully and with a magnificent melodic chorus. 'Bleed Out' is a stunner opening with a glorious piano figure but soon erupting into a brooding emotional number... "hear me"...complete with a haunting guitar solo and another divine chorus. Six and a half minutes of 'Debris' contrasts with what has preceded it, initially with rather hushed vocals and a slow progression, but breaking out powerfully in the final third.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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'Fear' and 'Things We Don't Know About' continue the variety before the explosive 'Hard Candy' with its pounding bass line grooves its way into the consciousness, as does 'Put It In' with its complex rhythms that drive this one along relentlessly. It comes across as quite an angry song, but contains another great chorus. 'Light You Up' has a very modern feel to it but a great underlying melody. I did not find 'Things We Do At Night' instantly appealing, but has insinuated itself over time, while the fabulous, but sad, ballad 'Not Broken Anymore' vies with 'Bleed Out' as the song of the album. Finally there's the semi-instrumental 'To Be' with a spoken Blessing that is carried off into a distorted loop.

I have found 'Sway' to be a highly satisfying listen, and one that has grown in stature with each play. Another successful outcome for the Pledge Music approach, I am sure that it will sell by the bucket loads, and is one for those of you who enjoy passionate, mature, rock music with a modern twist to consider investigating.

Paul Jerome Smith

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Dwight said:

...
Sway is just amazing, it has it all. It's one of the rare albums that is capable of satisfying a broad spectrum of emotions. Can't wait to hear it live during the Blue October tour this year.
 
March 11, 2015
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