SYNDICATE
Posted by: Dave on April 28, 2008 at 4:41 pm

BlindMelonForMyFriendsNote: This is the first album of new Blind Melon material since the death of frontman Shannon Hoon in 1995. Since his passing, the band released a posthumous album of previously recorded material (1996’s Nico) and various members went on to form bands like the disappointing Unified Theory and the excellent Abandon Jalopy (one of the most under-the-radar and underrated projects of the decade, it yielded Mercy, my #3 album of 2002). Now the surviving four original members of Blind Melon are back with new frontman Travis Warren.
Sound: They pick up right where they left off in the mid-‘90s. Travis Warren’s vocals sound impressively similar to Shannon Hoon’s – soaring, piercing, wistful, vulnerable and powerful – and the band crank out their signature brand of jammy, psychedelic roots rock with a modern, hard rockin’ edge that jumps back and forth between bright and sunny and dark and urgent.
Heavy Rotation track: “Father Time”
Medium Rotation tracks: “Make A Difference”; “Sometimes”; “Down on the Pharmacy”
Recommended: Blind Melon were one of the greatest rock bands of the ‘90s and never quite got the respect they deserved. Their self-titled 1992 debut was one of the top 10 albums of that decade, and it’s follow-up (1995’s Soup) was nearly as excellent. That said, it makes sense that the guys would want to return to that sound when they discovered a vocalist who can approximate the incomparable Shannon Hoon. But the big problem with Travis Warren is his lyrics. His words are a far cry from the despondent, soul searching of Hoon. He’s more nostalgic and feel-good, instead of reckless and dangerous, and can often veer into lazy and embarrassing clichés that undermine the excellent sounds he and the rest of the band create. Musically Blind Melon is in fine form here, but the songs and songwriting are a few notches below their lofty standard.
Grade: B

Listen to Tracks/Buy Music:
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One Response to “Blind Melon For My Friends (Adrenaline)”

  1. matt Says:

    nice review, dave. have faith in travis. this record is his first time out with the band under delicate circumstances. watch for a strengthening of his prose if they keep the show going, which i hope they do.

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