Music Review //
"Don't Shoot the Messenger!" //

When "Don't Shoot the Messenger" begins there is a fragmented song with static turning into pianos and hidden vocals behind it.   This reminds me a bit of Blue October and is an interesting way to be introduced to this album and Livingroom, as what follows is not quite as experimental.   Right into the second song, "Keeping Time", there is a distinct sound of pop rock which channels That Thing You Do!.   "Mickey the Daydreamer" also has elements of Buddy Holly and so it just becomes a lot of that era of rock n roll.

As the sax comes in on "Mickey the Daydreamer" I realize we're in for something special because it is taking those ideas of a band which predates the 1980's and is blending it seamlessly with something from either the 1980's or 1990's (I always imagine this type of sax as being from the movie "Better Off Dead")   Livingroom just conveys a sound of pure melodic rock with guitar solos such as the one on "Window Shopping" and backing vocals such as can be found on the song "Easy".

Acoustics find their way into "Sabrina's Song" while there are big pianos on "Tangents".  "SOS" takes off with dreamy acoustics which feel somewhere between Phantom Planet and Pink Floyd and once that song is reached it can be thought that this entire album exists somewhere between those two artists perhaps.   "Better Left Unsaid" comes out like a lullaby while "Livingroom" as a song has strumming with horns, muted vocals and just ends with that big orchestra feeling.  

What I truly enjoy about this album and Livingroom in general is that they aren't afraid to take chances and seem to be playing the music which they want to play.   There are moments where this feels so much like pop that songs could be on the radio and it has that really mainstream vibe to it.   But at the same time, there are pieces within the songs and at the beginning and end of the album where it feels more experimental and those who don't like the overly pop music of the radio can still find a lot of sounds within here to enjoy.


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