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DARKER MY LOVE Alive As You Are Dangerbird Records (2010)

Darker My Love

Darker My Love, the Los Angeles based psychedelic rock outfit, return with their third album. The follow-up to their breakthrough sophomore album, '2', it was recorded in a studio which, in its original guise as Wally Heider Recording, hosted recording sessions from acts such as Jefferson Airplane, Creedence Clearwater Revival, CSNY and The Grateful Dead. The Dead influence, notably their Workingman's Dead / American Beauty country rock period, is certainly evident on several tracks here.

The Dead-infused album opener 'Backseat' sets the tone for what's to come with a shuffling J.J. Cale 'Call Me The Breeze' type vibe. It's followed by the jangly nugget 'Split Minute' where the deep vocal is reminiscent of the great Lawrence of British band Felt.

Elsewhere, '18th Street Shuffle' and 'Dear Author' explore the same sonic territory as Black Rebel Motorcycle Club. 'Trail The Line' and the stomping 'A Lovely Game' are a brace of melodic gems, while 'Maple Day Getaway' is an instant garage / psych rock classic which features a terrific pedal steel solo from guest guitarist Joe Goldmark. The more mellow 'Cry On Me Woman' closes the album in style.

Overall, the heady mix of trippy West Coast psych and L.A.'s Paisley Underground sound makes it a really strong record which, with 11 tracks clocking in at just under 36 minutes, never outstays its welcome.


Review by Jim Henderson

Jim Henderson presents "Power Pop" on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sunday 18:00 from 1 August

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***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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