BY: Scott Foster
Label: Ektro Records
Available: April 16, 2014
As a fan of blues I was pretty excited to check out this offering from Plain Ride. Then I started looking at the band’s Facebook page. Oh, this is fronted by a fellow from Circle, whom I reviewed under the Falcon (ex-Circle) name. It turns out there are three members of Circle that make up Plain Ride. Specifically, the three guitarists. I started to dread giving this album a listen, as I was really underwhelmed with the guitars in Falcon.
I was wrong. Guys, these are the kind of albums you should be making. I absolutely love the acoustic rhythms counter-pointed by the leads. And do I detect shades of Hendrix? Skeleton Kites had everything that Falcon’s Frontier offering was missing. I loved the blues inspired intro to Yesterday’s Fire and the folk/western feel of Suuri Vesi. Even the slow, methodical opening of St. Jenny has appeal and works for the song.
There is one point where the albums falls flat for me, and this is entirely subjective, but the English spoken vocals just don’t always work. Generally this seems to come up from awkward pronunciations, which stand out most on Lt Greely, a track I have come to avoid. Still, I would not let this turn you off from the album. It’s something that can be overlooked with little trouble.
Gentlemen of Plain Ride, I think this album is a winner. Please make more like it.
Janne Westerlund – vocals, guitar
Pekka Jääskeläinen – bass
Julius Jääskeläinen – guitar, keyboards
Sami Vironen – harp, keyboards
Anssi Hallio – drums