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Spill Canvas, The - No Really, I'm Fine Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 8.75
Musicianship 7.5
Lyrics 7.5
Production 7
Creativity 6.75
Lasting Value 7.25
Reviewer Tilt 8.25
Final Verdict: 76%
Member Ratings
Vocals 9.03
Musicianship 9.06
Lyrics 9.09
Production 9.5
Creativity 8.43
Lasting Value 8.97
Reviewer Tilt 8.87
Average: 90%
Inside AP.net

Spill Canvas, The - No Really, I'm Fine

Reviewed by: Julia Conny (10/30/07)
The Spill CanvasNo Really, I’m Fine
Release Date: October 2, 2007
Record Label: Sire Records


South Dakota, or North Dakota for that matter, doesn’t evoke much on the musical spectrum. Four dudes driving mean emotional rock riffs into the ground isn’t what would typically come to mind. Nature landscapes, perhaps, but The Spill Canvas? This may be because when TSC serves up a particularly nasty bit of heavy shredding and husky guitars, regret, nostalgia and contempt for testy relationships don’t sit right before a peaceful mountainous landscape. Is South Dakota a mountainous state? Doesn’t matter – you get my point.

If we fast-forward to two albums and one EP later, The Spill Canvas leaped from One Eleven Records to a major (Sire Records), grabbed a devoted fan-pack, and prepped themselves to release a new full-length titled No Really, I’m Fine. 2005’s One Fell Swoop, the shiniest pearl from the band’s discography, is a class-act to follow. The question is undeniable: will the new album hold up and compare? Will the band’s booming, good-natured rock keep fresh?

The entire product – 12 songs signing in at a little under 45 minutes – follows a predetermined sound path that The Spill Canvas knows is tangible and catchy. The opener is no “Lust A Prima Vista,” but “Reckless Abandonment” sets the bar high for the album’s loaded arrangements. Save a couple slower songs, the majority of the album is lush in riffs, heavy in tone, and speedy in tempo. Guitar melodies on tracks like “Battles” and “All Over You” are priceless, but the whole album isn’t as indispensable as One Fell Swoop. The chorus on “Hush Hush” is initially attractive but loses its flavor after multiple listens, and “The Truth” floats in the same boat. “Connect the Dots” is the slowest, most romantic song off No Really, I’m Fine (next to ending track – “Lullaby”). It boasts a snazzy air and seductive murmur from Thomas in lines like “Don't you just love the feeling of my fingertips, circling your lips” and has a superior lasting power.

Like on One Fell Swoop, Thomas spits lines like a wounded lion, delivering punches with such fury that you know he was fucking angry when pen hit paper (“Bleed, Everybody’s Doing It” and “Reckless Abandonment”). When the song is swooning about real love, Thomas is aching for a remedy (“One Thing Is For Sure”). No matter what the subject matter, all the tracks on No Really, I’m Fine are delivered with integrity. From the arrangements, lyrics, and vocal execution, this is one of The Spill Canvas’ greatest trademarks, and there is no difference on this album than any other. I equate Thomas to a breathy, small-town, and inconsolable version of Matchbox 20’s Rob Thomas, and it’s always given The Spill Canvas a vocal edge over any of their emotional rock contemporaries.

No Really, I’m Fine is similar to One Fell Swoop, but this is because The Spill Canvas isn’t starting on new sounds, formulas or concepts. Instead, this album is a collection of genuine songs, just like One Fell Swoop or Sunsets and Car Crashes. The album should have this as a warning sticker: In previous fashion, Thomas and crew can unhook your bra one-handed.

Check It OutAP.net Profile | Myspace | Official Site
Standout Tracks“Connect the Dots,” “All Over You” and “Battles”
 
Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 72
10:24 AM on 10/30/07
#2
Julia Conny
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I know I'm way past the release date. There are a couple reasons for that, but enjoy nonetheless.
10:31 AM on 10/30/07
#3
airik625
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Really good review. I have been meaning to get this but my local best buy doesn't carry it oddly enough. I'll pick it up sooner or later.
10:32 AM on 10/30/07
#4
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Great review,totally agree with the Rob Thomas comparison, but I have to say that I consider 'Connect the dots' and 'battles' to be the weakest tracks on the record.

Great record.
10:42 AM on 10/30/07
#5
HazeLitRise
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eh, not too impressed with this.
a few of the songs are solid, but the guitars just don't sound right.
lullaby is my favorite song, but compare that to anything nick has written in the past, and it just seems like a disappointment. (i still love the song regardless)
10:51 AM on 10/30/07
#6
matt_rawlings
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Lyrics 7.5


Not even close imo
10:51 AM on 10/30/07
#7
parkerjamison
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pretty good review, i disagree with the stand out tracks i think the strongest tracks on the record are "All Over You", "Low Fidelity", and "Appreciation" and No Really, I'm Fine to me, isnt similar to One Fell Swoop at all. No Really, I'm Fine has a much more mainstream sound to me.
10:55 AM on 10/30/07
#8
CellarGhosts
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Cool review. Ive always liked the Spill Canvas, so I'll prob check this out sometime soon.
10:57 AM on 10/30/07
#9
Julia Conny
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Lyrics 7.5


Not even close imo

I've never been wowed by his lyrics. He has some great lines, but they've never shook me like other lyricists.
10:58 AM on 10/30/07
Jason Tate
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Well written (as always).
11:00 AM on 10/30/07
tragedyco
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Lyrics 7.5


Not even close imo

yeah, haven't heard this album but i thought the lyrics were unbearable on the last record.
11:00 AM on 10/30/07
Julia Conny
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pretty good review, i disagree with the stand out tracks i think the strongest tracks on the record are "All Over You", "Low Fidelity", and "Appreciation" and No Really, I'm Fine to me, isnt similar to One Fell Swoop at all. No Really, I'm Fine has a much more mainstream sound to me.

I guess it depends on your definition of a mainstream sound. If anything, I figure One Fell Swoop would be more "mainstream" because I think there where catchier choruses.
11:02 AM on 10/30/07
Julia Conny
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Well written (as always).

Thank you.

I think my writer's block has passed, I hope.
11:02 AM on 10/30/07
infamousgoogler
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"Appreciation and the Bomb" is easily the standout track of this album. If you don't think so, go listen to the song again, read the lyrics, and feel the emotion they pour into that track. If you still disagree, you're wrong. And you need help.

That is all.
11:04 AM on 10/30/07
permanentdan
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i like this album a lot.
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