Sure, if you're a new band on the scene today and you want to put
out a new album, you can do it DIY. But Shirock didn't just
stop there. Nope. Instead they did an album, a label, a non-profit
organization and a clothing line. Busy, for this group, is an understatement.
Everything Burns is their debut album and marks the band's
entrance into the big ol' music pond. And while they may still be
a little fish, they've at least made an album that has a fairly strong
presence. Right away I can see the song "New Solution" as
an easy pick for a single release. The energy is in full force for
this song. The vocals are chipper and up beat. It's a very happy song
that evokes a feeling that's a mix between U2 and Shiny
Toy Guns (pre-Season Of Poison). And if you're really feeling
the STG reference then you'll love "Still Young" whose lead-in
rivals that of "Richoet!" The tempo maintains throughout
the song and when combined with a Coldplay-esque piano, makes
this song rather entertaining. When you hit "I'll Take Rain"
you're not really expecting a female vocal love ballad to suddenly
appear. To be honest, the audience that this song would attract is
vastly different than the previous songs. With lyrics like "I
found the one and you fill me with joy," you can't expect anything
more than delicate guitars and a hint of drums. But nothing is too
strong so as to not take away from those poetic lyrics. To mix it
up, there's a male ballad that gets thrown into the album. "Man
Inside" starts off very slow with a solo piano and some emotional
vocals. With this lead in you're preparing yourself for another melodic
song, perfect for nap time. However, as the lyrics "I'm headed
for a breakdown" repeat, the song leads into some great guitar
riffs. The emotion is definitely still there, but now at least I feel
as though we're singing it in an Aerosmith kind of way. The
title track to this album "Everything Burns" is at the #11
spot and it comes complete with its own intro. This intro is a combination
of instrumentals mostly filled with a piano and some electronics,
as well as a speech. The speech seems to come from a minister of some
sort. It speaks of life and death and the important things that you
should focus on. But it's not in a "preachy" way; rather
it's simplistic, so much so in a way that it really makes you want
to listen to what he's saying. The speech ends with the words "everything
burns," which naturally provides a perfect lead-in to the title
track. I feel like the purpose of that speech was to stir up some
chills in your body that the song itself brings to the surface. The
song isn't as powerful as I thought it would be, in the loud sense.
Instead, it's a blanket of beautiful vocals that float perfectly on
top of the basic rock rhythms. There is a point where the guitar comes
out for a little note plucking solo. But for the most part, the sound
is fairly mellow. "I Have Been Redeemed" is the final moment
of the album. It's a sound that goes back to that original U2 one,
especially with the vocals that seem to be Bono by telekinesis.
For five minutes it's as though you're frozen. No matter how much
work needs to be done or how many bills are to be paid, for those
few minutes you feel as though you're only job is to listen to this
song. You'd be hard pressed to find another final track that leaves
you this enlightened.
Alright, so they know what they're doing, that's obvious. But this
music isn't going to be for everyone, as I'm pretty sure there's a
religious affiliation in there somewhere. But besides that, I have
faith that there's an audience out there for Shirock to find.
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