Burn Burn review by Our Lady Peace

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  • Released: Jul 21, 2009
  • Sound: 8
  • Lyrics: 8
  • Overall Impression: 7
  • Reviewer's score: 7.7 Good
  • Users' score: 8.2 (33 votes)
Our Lady Peace: Burn Burn
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Sound — 8
Our Lady Peace blazed their trail out of their native Canada and onto American radio airwaves in 1997 with the title track Clumsy and 4 AM. The songs are alt-rock staples and while Burn Burn doesn't teem with super obvious singles, it's an earnest exercise in catchy, inoffensive and relatable rock n roll that will still tickle the fancy of those who were ardent fans of the band during its heyday. The alt rock genre has been overtaken by emo, so much so that bands like OLP have been adrift without a genre or radio format to cling to anymore! Dreamland, the album's second song, is the closest thing that could lead the band to the restoration of former, prior glory. It's a ballad with positive lyrics that never drifts into maudlin or melancholic territory. It could serve as a prom song, with its sincere, genuine tone. You can picture the kids singing along to it! All You Did Was Save My Life opens the album and it certainly rocks, as does Monkey Brains, with its thudding bass line. Never Get Over You is another slow-tempo song that will attract a strong female demographic. Escape Artist and Refuge are pair of back-to-back ballads with quirky riffs and layered sounds, and it's apparent that Our Lady Peace weave in and out moods and tempos throughout the course of Burn Burn yet the bipolarity doesn't sink the record. It's actually a boost and the juxtaposition of those two head-down tunes next to a chunky, heavier song like The Right Stuff that proves how nice guy Our Lady Peace can be. Thankfully, OLP never go too vanilla or dole out bland songs. Our Lady Peace manage to not be middle of the road, which is hard to do in this confounding genre of music!

Lyrics — 8
Raine Maida's voice is quite pretty and comforting without being wimpy or emo. He isn't soaring, but his pitch is a bit higher than your average rock vocalist and his semi-tinny timber is what makes his band stand out from the pack. He's a rock dude with a propensity for flipping his cards up on the table, right in the middle of a bluff. He is a decent-to-above-average lyricist and his tone, coupled with the not-too-heavy and not-too-hard vibe of the music is what makes Our Lady Peace a band that young ladies and those in their mid-to-late-30s gravitate towards, which will be attributed to Maida's sensitive guy syndrome.

Overall Impression — 7
The alt-rock formula has served Our Lady Peace well and they don't tinker much with it and that's the smartest decision they could have made. While the landscape (and the radio format and genre) that the band found fame within has changed drastically to the point that trying to define alternative is nearly impossible, Burn Burn effectively transports the listener to a decade prior. It's nostalgic, even though the songs are new, and there really is nothing wrong with that. Our Lady Peace continue to exist outside of that time and space and continue with their career, making viable music that will still find its audience, even if not on the same large scale.

20 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Univibe
    Either way, Raine Maida is the king. The king of taking a good heavy riff and making it gay. Hyeee a hoowee who?
    secretdeath15
    i just acquired the album, and from a few songs ive heard sounds good. I generally am a fan of his vocals and hiw he uses them. He's got a distinguishing voice which i find strangely addicting lol
    JohnnyV
    Another solid album by a solid band. I enjoyed the whole thing and I think that what makes this album (and the band) so good is that it is something different.
    HughF
    JayLacelle wrote: flame843 wrote: idk why raine inisisted that this album sounds like naveed, because it doesn't, at all. it's still enjoyable though. i really like escape artist. raine didn't say it would sound like naveed, he said it was a return to the raw originality of naveed. the songs of burn burn have a level of intensity that i haven't heard since their earlier days. and some of the songs do actually sound like naveed. listen to "monkey brains" and "the right stuff"
    He said it would sound like a modern Naveed. It does not. This album needed a lot more distortion and a smaller number of slow songs. Hell, I liked Healthy in Paranoid Times better than this.
    JimBonJovi
    They'll never write or create an album as good as Naveed again. Why? Steve Mazur isn't nearly as talented as Mike Turner was/is. I blame Bob Rock he almost destroyed Metallica and to some degree Our Lady Peace.
    whoa_backoff
    The Bluesfest show rocked! I was hoping this album would sound more like Naveed. It's definitely a step forward when compared to their last few albums.
    JayLacelle
    flame843 wrote: idk why raine inisisted that this album sounds like naveed, because it doesn't, at all. it's still enjoyable though. i really like escape artist.
    raine didn't say it would sound like naveed, he said it was a return to the raw originality of naveed. the songs of burn burn have a level of intensity that i haven't heard since their earlier days. and some of the songs do actually sound like naveed. listen to "monkey brains" and "the right stuff"
    flame843
    idk why raine inisisted that this album sounds like naveed, because it doesn't, at all. it's still enjoyable though. i really like escape artist.
    taytay8b
    punkrocker22 wrote: Slash_HuDsOn wrote: cool stuff I'm getting this for sure after their Ottawa Bluesfest performance OLP at a Bluesfest. Was that the really wacked out one that had guys like Kiss, Cake, and Ani DeFranco?
    Yea that was the one. The festival technically shouldn't even be called Bluesfest anymore, but I think that they just keep it for tradition's sake and whatnot. Bluesfest is more or less just a general music festival now.
    MetaShedda23
    sounds good. i wasnt really interested when i heard OLP was making a new record until i heard all you did was save my life and then i knew i had to get burn burn.
    punkrocker22
    Slash_HuDsOn wrote: cool stuff I'm getting this for sure after their Ottawa Bluesfest performance
    OLP at a Bluesfest. Was that the really wacked out one that had guys like Kiss, Cake, and Ani DeFranco?
    BurnzyRock
    i saw these guys at bayfest in sarnia, and they were easily the best band there, and they werent even the headlining band!
    Dymencion
    I saw them at Bluesfest in Ottawa too last week, and they were on fire. Im really looking forward to this.
    JayLacelle
    this album rocks!!! just got it and i have to say its their best work since clumsy!!
    ColdbringeR
    They lost a lot of what made them them when they parted ways with Mike Turner (guitar) and Arnold Lanni (producer). As much as I would like to, I just haven't enjoyed their music nearly as much since.
    Somnambulance
    OLP is great. Sort of sucks that their market doesn't exist anymore. Bands like them, Third Eye Blind, etc were such a big part of the 90's. I'd rather have bands like this on the radio then most the junk radios play nowadays, even if its not necessarily always bonafide classic material.
    NightEmbers
    Hmmm i only have gravity but i really like it, maybe i should pick up both burn burn and clumsy
    Kracker_AA
    I don't understand why anyone would want a band to duplicate their first albums. Every album they made rocks because there all different from another. You people call yourself music lovers! How can you give a negative comment about an album that was 100% made in Raines basement without anyone altering the songs. this is music the way it should be. Love it or hate it, Raine Maida is an awesome guy!