Volume 94, Issue 79
Tuesday, February 13, 2001
|ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
Mahones' celtic rock uncompelling
Here Comes Lucky
True North Records
An above average rock band can go a long way simply by playing in bars and at festivals. Most times, however, the live music does not always transfer very well into the recording studio.
Unfortunately, the Ontario-based band The Mahones' recordings suffer from too much time spent on the bar and festival circuit. Playing Irish-tinged roots-rock music, the group doesn't manage to inspire on their fourth release. Here Comes Lucky attempts to meld the spirit of their live shows with radio-friendly songs. The problem is that the record fails, despite the band's noble intentions.
The Mahones do not even come close to mustering any real spirit or energy on Here Comes Lucky. The major flaw is in the production, which seems to clutter, instead of clarify the sound. The recording is quite poor, either burying Finny McConnell's lead vocals under blasts of electric guitar and heavy percussion or leaving the vocals on their own, sounding hollow and empty.
The "radio friendly" songs fall short in the originality department and the music is extremely derivative of your standard roots-rock fare (think Tom Cochrane with pennywhistle).
The songs that work best are the Irish drinking ones, aided greatly by traditional accompaniment. But even these come off as sounding flat in the studio environment.
The Mahones are certainly a talented band. Here Comes Lucky simply lacks any standout songs or inspired playing. What could be one hell of a live set turns out to be a rather flat record.
Better luck next time.
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