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Rosebuds, The - Loud Planes Fly Low Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 9.25
Musicianship 9.5
Lyrics 9.25
Production 9
Creativity 9
Lasting Value 9.25
Reviewer Tilt 9.5
Final Verdict: 93%
Member Ratings
Vocals 9.81
Musicianship 9.5
Lyrics 9.88
Production 9.63
Creativity 9.63
Lasting Value 10
Reviewer Tilt 10
Average: 98%

Rosebuds, The - Loud Planes Fly Low

Reviewed by: Broden Terry (06/30/11)
The Rosebuds - Loud Planes Fly Low
Record Label: Merge Records
Release Date: June 14th, 2011

With the release of their fifth studio full-length titled Loud Planes Fly Low, North Carolina duet The Rosebuds prove with class and elegance that beauty can indeed come as a direct result of heartache and tragedy. On this emotional ten track offering it's evident that there's a mixture of marvelous sounding sonic textures and thoughtfully contemplative lyrics that frequently, and at times inadvertently, touch upon the unavoidable subject and topic of their marriage as it delicately disintegrates in forty heartfelt minutes of glazed keyboards, lyrical candidness and minor key melodies.

In fact, there's a certain unmistakable element of emptiness when it comes to rewinding and backtracking in order to delve within and explore The Rosebuds' discography. 2003's The Rosebuds Make Out contained an abundance of youthful exuberance, energy and enthusiasm that intertwined with romantic tension to culminate in a playfully charming album of love and adoration. Their sophomore release saw both Kelly Crisp and Ivan Howard daring to consider the possibility of children and beginning a family, and the ultimate desire to persevere and love even when love itself seems to have lost its glistening gloss and merely appears to be nothing more than a compelling illusion. Their previous two releases (2007's Night of the Furies and 2008's Life Like) painted artistic and vivid imagery expressed through the magnitude of honesty within the lyrics that the pair had penned. Both records captured a startling sense of derailment, darkness, tension and desperation that now seamlessly leads like a moving and relatable storyline into their fifth and arguably finest release yet, Loud Planes Fly Low.

Album opener "Go Ahead" sets the tone for the remainder of the record as it slowly and carefully fluctuates conflictingly between majestic and melancholy. The track itself is a luscious amalgam of droning organ harmonies, shimmering piano notes, and multi-layered vocals with Howard taking a moment to reflect upon and juxtapose the mundane and fantastical portions of his relationship with Crisp. He sings delicately with surprising confidence and power amid the inseparable tangle of emotions he showcases and endures, "Letís make a pact, set a date / meet back up here at this same place / and maybe brim will make beds in your dresses". The track itself is saturated in sincerity, every individual lyric appears discreetly cloaked in wordplay and metaphor, and without doubt the rich, gorgeous and infrequently used echoing vocal harmonies ever present in the background allow the song to cascade with power and vulnerability.

The shimmering string-soaked, "Limitless Arms" is a reflective and moody number that's driven by heavy basslines and Howard's distinctly unique mournful crooning. The instrumentation is variable and lovely as the pleasant combination of swift strings, pulsating drumbeats and delicate guitar chords form a musical soundscape and atmosphere of moodiness and haunting tension. It's a captivating and thoughtfully constructed slow tempo tune full of grace and elegance, but one slight negative is that the track can become and be considered somewhat repetitive towards its atmospheric ending. "Come Visit Me" proves to be an early album highlight for it features the gorgeous vocals of Crisp as her words and delivery drift, float and maneuver eloquently whilst being accompanied by a largely downtrodden dance groove. The lyrics are expertly crafted and arguably some of the best on the record as Crisp sings her outspoken admission, her voice soaring while being torn between a hurricane of doubt and conviction, "And I want to feel something way out here / I need something to happen now, even if it fucks me up / come visit me, way out here / I need you to see me, even if it makes it worse". If it's not already evident that the lyrical topic and theme revolves around their marriage break-up, Howard stays in the background adding flourishes of backing harmonies before responding with naked confessionalism and a wounded vocal tone, "I would have never left you alone way out there".

Fortunately as the record approaches its middle stages it loses none of its engagement and personality. "Without A Focus" is another predominantly slower tempo number that's rendered both experimental and basic in terms of its minimalistic approach to instrumentation, overdubs and layering. Howard finds himself with his heart on his torn and frayed sleeve with nothing but his own delicately strummed guitar and piercingly honest lyrics that somehow manage to unexpectedly conjure an intense and compelling four minute outing. "Waiting For You" is both beautifully and equally charming with its sing-along verses full of interplay and charm. It's breezy, light and magnificent as Howard sings without a semblance of restraint, "And I tried to be myself" only to then be accompanied by Crisp as she complements him flawlessly, "and Iím waiting for you". An assortment and combination of bells and flourishing strings signal the beginning to "Woods", a song that arguably contains the most urgent, aggressive and energetic chorus you're likely to locate on the record. The passion, the underlying sense of power and confidence provides the track with enormously propelling lifts of momentum that are welcomely received.

The album ends in truly breathtaking fashion with three minutes of heartache, resignation and reconciliation in the form of album closer, "Worthwhile". One can only imagine the outpouring of emotions that took place in that studio as Howard sung from a heart so recently broken as he himself broke down into tears at the beginning of the track. "If we could go on wishing all the time / then we couldíve had a break when we were tired / and we would rest awhile, and Iíd try to make you smile / girl, I want to make it all worthwhile". It's able to resonate with you in a way that very few tracks can manage; and there lies its immeasurable power.

If you're wondering why the lack of negatives, why the overwhelming praise isn't fairly distributed alongside equal amounts of harsh critique, the answer is simple - there isn't a whole lot here to dislike. Every individual track has its own therapeutic message and the album as a whole is wonderfully cohesive and produced to the finest of details. From heartache and vulnerability through to acceptance and salvaging a friendship when all could have potentially been lost, who needs a plane to fly low when the detail and scenery on offer here in these forty minutes is already far more beautiful, dazzling, and effortlessly uplifting?

Recommended If You LikeGayngs, The Love Language, Earlimart

Additional Information1. Go Ahead
2. Limitless Arms
3. Second Bird of Paradise
4. Come Visit Me
5. Without A Focus
6. Waiting For You
7. Woods
8. A Story
9. Cover Ears
10. Worthwhile
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Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 16
04:25 AM on 06/30/11
#2
Gregory Robson
Under Rug Swept
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Sweet review. One of North Carolina's finest and the latest, and most shining example, in a long line of great music from that state.
05:42 AM on 06/30/11
#3
Sunken In
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I've really liked what I've heard off this so far, and based on this review I would say this is probably something I should pick up..
07:18 AM on 06/30/11
#4
Holly HoX!
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This is a GREAT album...but I have a feeling Megafaun's new album might take this one.
11:48 AM on 06/30/11
#5
Lueda Alia
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I've really liked what I've heard off this so far, and based on this review I would say this is probably something I should pick up..
As if I ever recommend bad bands. Come on now.
11:59 AM on 06/30/11
#6
Sunken In
All I think about is floating away
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As if I ever recommend bad bands. Come on now.
I know I know. Actually I already have two of their albums. I just have to be picky buying new stuff cuz Im so poor!
02:39 PM on 06/30/11
#7
ExtremeAvalanch
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One of the absolute best records of the year...and a great return to form after Life Like. That album just wasn't up to snuff...
06:23 PM on 06/30/11
#8
jbwillisfan
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another awesome review. i'm going to give this a shot when it's finished downloading.
06:29 PM on 06/30/11
#9
Broden Terry
I'm glad I built myself an igloo
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This is a GREAT album...but I have a feeling Megafaun's new album might take this one.

I didn't even realize they had a new full-length announced. Gather, Form and Fly was wonderful so I'm looking forward to the new one!
03:44 AM on 07/01/11
Lizbella
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best review. why don't you write about the "bigger" and "scene" releases? i see people like drew and thomas coming out with a big releases every week. is there some kind of earning your stripes thing happening here cause you can obviously write so i don't understand it. just seems a shame you get a thousand views while they get 10k+
04:26 AM on 07/01/11
DJWildefire
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Great review, great album.
09:02 AM on 07/01/11
Lueda Alia
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best review. why don't you write about the "bigger" and "scene" releases? i see people like drew and thomas coming out with a big releases every week. is there some kind of earning your stripes thing happening here cause you can obviously write so i don't understand it. just seems a shame you get a thousand views while they get 10k+
He's free to review whatever he wants to; there are no restrictions. However, I would prefer for him to cover bands that wouldn't get much coverage otherwise. But yeah, he can review "scene" releases as well if he wanted to.

Other Staffers get more views because they've been here longer. I don't think that should matter much, though. It's great that Broden keeps covering quality music that doesn't get much love from anyone else but the two of us (and maybe a few other Staffers).
04:51 PM on 07/01/11
Broden Terry
I'm glad I built myself an igloo
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best review. why don't you write about the "bigger" and "scene" releases? i see people like drew and thomas coming out with a big releases every week. is there some kind of earning your stripes thing happening here cause you can obviously write so i don't understand it. just seems a shame you get a thousand views while they get 10k+

I signed up to write the review for People and Things by Jack's Mannequin which I guess people would consider a big release. But I'm happy covering these bands like The Rosebuds, Other Lives and The Submarines because they're absolutely terrific and they're big and important releases to me that thoroughly deserve the attention and exposure.

Plus I think it's far more fulfilling watching some of these smaller bands continually increase in popularity and reading comments from people who didn't even know who these bands were saying how much they love the music!
03:15 PM on 07/24/11
Rich Duncan
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Great review, I look forward to reading your future reviews! This album is one of my favorites of the year, I have a feeling I will listen to it even more in the fall though.
05:53 PM on 09/16/11
Eva Friedman
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I signed up to write the review for People and Things by Jack's Mannequin which I guess people would consider a big release. But I'm happy covering these bands like The Rosebuds, Other Lives and The Submarines because they're absolutely terrific and they're big and important releases to me that thoroughly deserve the attention and exposure.

Plus I think it's far more fulfilling watching some of these smaller bands continually increase in popularity and reading comments from people who didn't even know who these bands were saying how much they love the music!
You're reviewing People And Things?! I'm almost as excited about that as I am the actual album.

Anyways, I have no idea why I'm only reading this now, but really great review. You brought out all the important things.
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