The Rocket Summer – Life Will Write the Words
Reviewed by Mark Plummer
Following on from two succesful, critically acclaimed mainstream albums, Power Pop’s very own Trent Reznor, is back with his fifth album Life WIll Write the Words. Whilst shying away from the Power Pop genre and giving his songs more of an Indie/Alternative feel, Avary has still retained his talent for putting together a well written song. Of Men and Angels was the first time we got to see Avary adding a bit of edginess to his songwriting, and this release is no different. Certain tracks retain a slightly grittier feel, whilst others contain styles reminiscent of previous works. There’s even an essence of his second album Hello, Good Friend in the way that the vocals come across almost unrestrained.
In essence this record isn’t too different from Of Men and Angels with each song feeling like it could be found on that album. You could argue that this crosses the boundary as a Men and Angels v2.0 with the main difference in how the vocals have been worked to sound more grungy. Whilst this is usually a reason not to give an album a proper chance, there are a lot of pros that attach themselves to Life Will Write the Words.
There’s a great balance between the piano and the rest of the traditional band, something that seems hard to achieve for those bands that heavily feature a piano. This really comes together in how unified the band come across when they’re all playing together. The piano manages to do just enough whilst not trying to be over complicating in how it’s played. This sits well with the rest of the album, but a bit more imagination wouldn’t go a miss and is something that is generally absent from bands that focus themselves around the piano. Whilst Life Will Write the Words doesn’t generally advertise anything new to The Rocket Summer’s resume, there is one reason to purchase it, it’s a brilliant summer record. Bryce Avary manages to write songs that have a great light feeling to them, in turn being easy to listen to without having to pull them apart. However, should you require a deeper listen, there is great lyrical work to pull apart and pour over with envy and respect.
Whilst this isn’t in every respect something “new”, it does work very well as an album, and should appeal to those who aren’t just fans of The Rocket Summer. If you’ve not got the pennies to splurge on the whole album, definitely download either Revival, 200’000, or Circa ’46.
4 out of 5