Overall Impression — 10
Overall, this is easily the best album I've bought all year. Out of the 13 songs (including the bonus acoustic version of "Calling You"), I absolutely love 12 of the songs. The other one just strikes me as OK, but perhaps it has something to do with the fact I have no clue what the fuck the song is talking about "3 Weeks, She Sleeps" is one of the most beautiful songs I've ever heard. It's nothing but violin, mandolin, and some brilliant flute playing, which Justin's voice seems to match perfectly. "Somebody" is the heaviest song on the album, and I bet it sounds fucking intense live. The guitar riff reminds me quite a bit of "Thunderkiss '65" by White Zombie. Awesome, awesome song. Although it's not the heaviest song on the album, riff-wise, "Razorblade" is the most intense, lyrically. It's about the priest child molestation scandals. If this song doesn't touch you, disturb you, then there's something wrong with you. "Calling You" is the best single on the radio right now, and with any luck, it will be the song that gives Blue October the mainstream success they have deserved for years. Although the poppiest song on the album, the album's so diverse that it's just as good of a representation of the band as anything. "Come in Closer" is a brilliant song, but it doesn't feel like a Blue October song.. it's just Justin, an electric drum loop, a piano, and a female backing singer... but the fact that the rest of the band isn't used doesn't detract from it's greatness.. a great change of pace. "Sexual Powertrip (One Big Lie) Bla Bla", besides having the coolest album title evhar, is the most fun song on the album. It's about lying to get some poon. And really, there's nothing wrong with that, is there? Everything on this song just... works. "Inner Glow" is a song about the music industry, and the lack of originality. The line... "Here's a preview, shove it under old/new, call it Rock.. or Pop... or Bach.. or FUCK! Goddamn, where did we go wrong? Now there's a category for every song!" is my favorite line on the album. The arrangement of the song strikes me as a soundtrack cut, the type of song you'd hear in the credits of a movie. "Ugly Side", the first track on the album, is a really good way to start the album.. the electronic drum loop with a violin... then it goes straight into a mandolin and acoustic guitar melody. It's about the dualistic nature of man. Really nice song, again. "Amazing" is another beautiful song, but it's the closer of the album... an acoustic ballad, but the lyrics are pretty depressing... "Can you pretend I'm amazing? Instead of what we both know..." But it's a really good way to close the album.. unless you count the acoustic "Calling You", which starts about 10 minutes into this track, about 4 minutes after the song ends. "Chameleon Boy" is relating to a friend of the band that died of a drug overdose after their last album, Consent to Treatment, was released. It's about Justin's feelings that he didn't do enough to help, to prevent it.. another really powerful song(this album is just chock full of 'em, you know?) "Clumsy Card House" has one of the best openings of the album.. a mandolin into the full band... A song about love, and contemplation of the future... and it's really beautifully arranged. "A Quiet Mind"... I'll admit it, I have no clue what the song's about, so I'm not big on it.. but I'd still rather listen to it than 90% of the garbage on the radio today. A good, but not great song. The album's full of great written songs, beautiful, albiet unconventional arrangements, and most of the songs have a potent message. You can find this album for under 10 bucks, I can almost guarantee you. I found it at Hasting's for 8.99. This can be the album that can really break these guys from a regional Texas band to a nationally and internationally known band, as they dserve to be. Give this album a chance. Trust me on this.
History For Sale review by Blue October
Overall Impression — 10