Rock City Crew
Crew: Rock City
Extractor: EAC 0.99 prebeta 5
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Codec: Flac 1.2.1; Level 8
Source: Original CD
Artwork: Front, back, inlay, inside and CD (Web Found).
Artist: Mad Season
Album Title: Above
1. Wake Up
2. X-Ray Mind
3. River Of Deceit
4. I'm Above
5. Artificial Red
6. Lifeless Dead
7. I Don't Know Anything
8. Long Gone Day
9. November Hotel
Review taken from Rollingstone.com:
Believe it or not, Mad Season face some stiff odds. On one hand, they're a Seattle supergroup.
On the other, they're a Seattle supergroup. They could rest on the laurels
of their lineup – Alice in Chains singer Layne Staley, Pearl Jam lead guitarist
Mike McCready and Screaming Trees drummer Barrett Martin, with newcomer
John Baker Saunders on bass – or their collaboration could make a nice,
fat target for naysayers. Mad Season may not have the special chemistry that makes
their respective groups so successful, but they do have presence, and more importantly,
they take artistic risks and set out to make something fresh on Above.
Sometimes, Mad Season slip up, indulging opaque lyrics into which fans might read
Seattle-related meanings ("Rich and growing sicker/Sell the dead ones
quicker" goes a line in "X-Ray Mind"). Meanwhile, "Artificial Red" might have been
more aptly titled "Artificial Blues," and the arena-rock pomp and stilted
rhymes of "Lifeless Dead" highlight the album's hit-or-miss quality.
Cut from the album's final version was a much-needed palate cleanser in the form of
a soothing – if brief – acoustic interlude.
When they plunge into the two-ton metal groove of "I Don't Know Anything," the
over-the-top country-rock angst of "River of Deceit" ("My pain is self-chosen," sings Staley)
or the eerie cryptojazz of "Wake Up," Mad Season coalesce into something promising.
In a particular trio of tunes – "November Hotel," "All Alone" and
"Long Gone Day" – they kindle their creative sparks into music that gives off real heat.
The lengthy instrumental jam "November Hotel" allows McCready, Martin and Saunders
the chance to stretch out, providing an energetic high point as well as a canvas for
McCready's riffs and ravings. And in "All Alone," Staley lets his voice
become the song's focus, crystalline and strong, backed by a tensile, almost sitarlike drone.
Perhaps the last word on Mad Season, though, comes in "Long Gone Day," a lustrous duet
in which Staley trades verses with Screaming Trees vocalist Mark Lanegan, whose
honeyed growl is in its element among the cool percussion, sensitive sax and pliant bass.
That Mad Season are capable of tremendous power and also succeed with such a subtle song
proves that the band is – at times – more than the mere sum of its parts. (RS 706)