1997 - On The Run
Release Date: May 27, 2008
Record Label: Victory
It’s not unusual for a young band to face member changes, creative differences, and other road bumps along the way to being a successful band, and 1997 is no exception. But it’s how the young band reacts to said dilemmas that’ll make or break them. Right before the release of their Victory debut, A Better View Of The Rising Moon, in 2007, keyboardist and vocalist Kerri Mack left due to personal reasons, and bassist Colby Hatt left as well. But Alida Marroni and Alan Goffinski filled in immediately, helping the band to not lose any steam as they built momentum over the course of the year with non-stop touring. This past winter, 1997 headed up to Freeport, New York, to record with Steve Haigler (Brand New, As Tall As Lions) and came away with eleven tracks that make up their sophomore effort, On The Run.
While 1997’s debut was more on the pop-rock side, On The Run definitely moves into the musical direction of bands like Straylight Run and The Forecast; a more alternative, “indie-rock” (for lack of better term) record, full of lush instrumentation, which could be credited some to Haigler’s production skills. Opener “One Mind Track, Four Track Heart” seems to take the album title literally, as its fast-paced guitars and drums take the track on a getaway car. “Dancing With The Devil” is an aggressive tune, while “Sunset Beyond Black Clouds” channels just a bit of folk to mix in with this dreamy rocker, as the harmonica adds a nice touch.
“4 A.M. Conversation” may be my favorite track on the album, with a rickety guitar riff and booming drums, Marroni and vocalist Kevin Thomas play call and return as a couple coming to the bitter end of their relationship. “I Will Always Find You” is a dark, piano-paced tune anchored by Marroni, and “Winds Of Change” has a certain pep to it, a confident tune with spark. The album ends with a trifecta of quality songs, starting with “A Dream Of Form In Days Of Thought,” which is hauntingly beautiful and closes with the title track, a short gentle acoustic track.
To be honest, On The Run took me by surprise. I mildly enjoy their debut, although it was forgettable, but On The Run will definitely be spinning on my stereo for weeks to come. 1997 may be on the run from being a generic pop band, lineup shakeups, and my horrible puns, but with this release, they certainly aren’t hiding.
Total agreement. 1997 seems to be traveling down the Straylight Run path of musical evolution, and given that SR's debut album is one of my favorite records of all time, I could not be happier about it. I also like how the folk influences get progressively heavier the farther you get into the CD; you basically watch the stylistic shift unfold right in front of you.
Is it me or does Alida kinda sounds like Adrianne Verhoeven (of the greatly under-rated band The Anniversary)? I dunno maybe because I was dead tired when I listened to it last night, I'm gonna listen to it again tonight and make sure i'm not sounding like a jackass. Anyways it was good on the first listen, hopefully it will grow on me more.
Good review. 4 A.M. Conversation also stood out to me as the best track. I'm starting to think I'm the only one who enjoyed A Better View Of The Rising Moon, it was just a fun, upbeat record, and it was enjoyable. I'll have to give this a few more listens before I decide which one is better.
meh. 1997 always sort of bored me. I got this album, an after one listen I had a couple songs that I liked, but it didn't strike me as anything worth too many listens. I suppose I'll have to give it another shot...
i'm sorry, but i loved 'better view of the rising moon..." so much better. alida, you do not live up to kerri mack's legacy. she was by far a better singer and keyboardist. i am disappointed in the path 1997 has followed. i cannot listen to the cd without being upset, thus, i do not listen to it.
do yourself a favor, listen to the first cd. it's amazing.
the only thing they failed to mention, and probably one of the main reason for the change in sound, is that they added Cody J to second guitar. go to myspace and listen to his stuff, and it'll explain alot. also, Alida has more of a mellow voice, where as Kerri had a very distinct agressive voice. they had to change up to fit her better. i think this cd is alot better then you think. listen to it a few times. it'll really grow on you.