Album Review
Run Forever - The Devil and Death and Me Album Cover

Run Forever - The Devil and Death and Me

Reviewed by
Run, Forever - The Devil and Death and Me
Record Label – Solidarity Recordings
Release – July 3rd, 2010/December 21st, 2010
Let’s say that Conor Oberst woke up one morning and felt like having himself a good day. He didn’t just sit around the local coffee shop to brood in his singer-songwriter glory, but took that sweetened cup of coffee out for a walk on the town, breathed in the movement and life of the city, and settled in for some basement jams with a couple of friends. Perhaps Run, Forever is what you’d get at the end of this. The lyrical material and the dragging passion behind Anthony Heubel’s lead vocals are surely reminiscent of Bright Eyes, but the full-band drive certainly kicks things up a notch or five.

Standing three members strong, this Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania band is picking itself back up after a bit of an absence from their local music scene. Though The Devil and Death and Me originally found its release in early July of this year, the band recently signed to Solidarity Recordings which will be issuing a re-release of the record on December 21st.

Some guitar, some bass, some drums, and some vocals are really all you need. Run, Forever takes us back to a time of music simplicity without the need for over-polished vocals or instrumental work. They find their home in this ten-song collection of sweltering indie-folk.

The Devil and Death and Me circles through a series of heart-tugging tributes to the death of former guitarist Corey Wolfram. Led by “A Sequence of Sad Events,” a track which questions Wolfram’s young death with the strikingly true statement that “growing up means counting down,” the band’s oddly upbeat musicality will grab the listener’s ear while a closer listen brings the tragic material close to the audience’s heart.

Find your folk roots in the opening chords of “When It Won’t Leave.” “There’s things I’ve got to face, and I don’t want to learn that the hard way,” Heubel reflects in thoughts of death and friends and just making it through the roughest patches of life.

It’s these difficulties of life, however, that inspire this band from an extended slumber, provoking a full-length fleshed out with scratchy, impassioned vocals and the country-like twang of guitar. In the face of the unknown, Run, Forever have prodded for answers and, when left without suitable responses, created their own in The Devil and Death and Me.

“I believe there’s hope for us yet,” comes the resounding statement in the track “10,000 Years.” Yes, Run, Forever, there is definitely hope for you yet.

Recommended If You Likeindie/folk/punk; Conor Oberst kicking one of his many bands into high gear

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