Sugar Review

artist: Tonic date: 11/01/2010 category: compact discs
Tonic: Sugar
Released: Nov 9, 1999
Genre: Post-grunge
Number Of Tracks: 13
The band developed some more intricate melodies in their second full-length album.
 Sound: 10
 Lyrics: 9
 Overall Impression: 9
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overall: 9.3
Sugar Reviewed by: jjhand, on november 01, 2010
1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Sound: The band developed some more intricate melodies in their second full-length album. In particular, Jeff Russo plays very nice solos in almost every song in the record, and his chugging electric riff on "You Wanted More" fit quite well with the dynamic drum part. Emerson and Jeff's parts on "Future is Run" were also very well interleaved with interesting chords to harmonize with the great vocals. Lastly, the title track (Sugar) had a great meld of acoustic and electric tone throughout that showcases the tricks this band thrived on, including open tunings and a well balanced acoustic/electric/bass dynamic throughout. // 10

Lyrics: I really believe that Emerson Hart sings from his heart throughout this album (no pun intended). His lyrics are not as cliche as most post grunge alternative rock bands of the late 90's, and his tenor voice seems to be powerful in the upbeat tracks and soft in the ballads he plays. I thought that his lyrics in "Sugar" were very sincere & romantic while having a variable rhyme scheme:+ "Come on baby get your shoes on You're looking like you need a rescue Underneath the southern moonlight Where only I can find you We can do it with our eyes closed We can sit and talk for hours Underneath the golden flowers Where my sunshine grows" // 9

Overall Impression: This album compared well to other similar bands at the time and the band gained popularity from the younger listeners that heard their hits in the first two "American Pie" movies. I have to admit that their video of "Mean to Me" was also pretty interesting, since Emerson is being punched and kicked by a woman (who appears behind the camera lens) while the band keeps playing. The heavy rock guitar tone in the chorus and the angry lyrics are quite a departure from his more tender songs. Other impressive songs are "Sugar", "You Wanted More", "Sunflower", "Top Falls Down", and "Future Says Run". "Waiting for the Light to Change" was a nice ballad but its slow pace & orchestra strings may not be for everyone. "Love a Diamond" had a deep tone with the thick synthesizer part throughout but again had a slower tempo and did not have a heavy rock tone. This may be the best part of the album & Tonic, their ability to make both hard rock songs and slow ballads with smooth guitar in the same album. // 9

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