25
Nov
07

Better Bust Them Out!

Rogue

Even though it’s not even December, I have a rough framework for my top 10 list as of today. And as I was contemplating with who fits where and who just didn’t have the goods, I realized that a lot of those records which aren’t top 10 material, have still created some very memorable tracks and at times, even epic. Unfortunately though, some of those non-top 10 records have just been forgotten about. For 2008, it would make sense to keep a spreadsheet of every album I do listen to, because a lot of records this year were sampled care of MP3s and then quickly discarded from the HD if it didn’t meet my extensive criteria. (What would a checklist look like?) Wouldn’t it be nice to actually know how many new albums you really did hear the whole year? This could be worksheet two under my “Shows 2008” file, which should probably just be renamed to “NERD.”

Oakland’s Rogue Wave (R.I.Y.L.-Nada Surf, The Shins, Death Cab,) put out Asleep at Heaven’s Gate, their third album and to some, maybe their most mundane record yet. To me, that’s harsh and unwarranted, but the average track is about 4:30. That is practically double of Out of the Shadow’s ‘Nourishment Nation’. I always thought Rogue Wave were best when their songs didn’t exceed three minutes. (My posts are probably best when they don’t surpass 30 words) The first track, ‘Harmonium’ opens up the album with nothing but optimism and is one of the better album openers of this year. Yes, it is also the longest track, but this time the length works to their advantage, while for other songs, it just seems like they go on for days. Harmonium has a buildup that just doesn’t stop with its swelling guitars, breakneck high-hat tempo, lush piano melody, and of course Zach’s smooth vocals. It’s at the five-minute mark where you realize why you fell for this band originally.

Rogue Wave — Harmonium

Even if they won’t make my list because of only having a great first half of an album, they will make some new fans by being in a Zune commercial. This is the new radio.


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3 Responses to “Better Bust Them Out!”


  1. November 26, 2007 at 11:14 pm

    Nice start to an interesting concept for you. I haven’t purchased this album yet. I kind of forgot about it I guess. This serves as a good reminder.

    We discussed your initial thoughts about this album at length when you first listened to these songs. I wasn’t very encouraged to hear about the extended track lengths, but these guys can’t be avoided.

    Who can refuse a band who will sing an accapella version of your favorite track upon request?

    MiS side note: I find it quite ironic that Rogue Wave are in a Zune commercial while the Shins are newly featured in an iPod commercial. Both bands draw comparisons to one another for sure. But I believe JT first saw these guys when they opened up for the Shins back in the day.

  2. 2 Joe
    November 27, 2007 at 1:43 pm

    nice post…i think they’re better when you exceed 30 words! it is hard keeping track of albums for each year, i’ve bought a lot this year including older album. i love the old 97’s debut i bought in chicago. i’m spinning that a lot. thanks too for the sfgate article…forwarding to my class right now!


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