Monday, March 25, 2013

God Save The Kings and Queens

Reboots are all the rage these days. Sometimes they work. Take Batman for example. The Dark Knight may be a little tough to take for some, especially when your first introduction to the superhero was the Adam West TV Show. Still, if you've ever gotten ahold of some of the early comics, and I saw them in a library book a long time ago, Superman was a vigilante who really wasn't all to concerned if the police got to arrest the criminal, only that he was stopped. So it actually is closer to original intent. Then there are times that it doesn't work. Take the new Spiderman. Now, I admit, Emma Stone is cute, but how can you have Spidey without Mary Jane. Plus it really got bogged down in back story, IMHO.

Which brings me to Audio Adrenaline. When the band broke up back in 2006 it shocked a lot of fans, and we pretty much despaired of ever seeing Audio A. again. It was strike two for anyone who liked DC Talk. Combine with that a big Breakup in the punk world with Bleach a few years before that and it seemed that Christian Rock was in a big time decline.

The only thing that died was DC Talk, but the band has, by its death, Resurrected Christian Rock. First came the solo act known as TobyMac, bringing the Rap/Rock sound mainstream, and incidentally killing Rap Music by making it an offshoot of Rock. Michael Tait had a brief solo career as well but that quickly fizzled. But now he has come into his own as lead vocalist for Newsboys. Then there was the third member of the group. Kevin Max. Like Toby Mac he seemed to have a thriving career as a solo artist, and that unique "shimmering" voice seemed to be a good fit for alternative. No one would have called him a rock singer. But they would be wrong.

The Audio Adrenaline reboot, entitled Kings & Queens [+video]  is pure genius. Surviving original member Will McGinnis knew they couldn't sell a reformed band singing old songs for long, so he blew it up. Recruiting former members of Superchick and Bleach and K-Max on vocals, the new edition has been tailored to Maxes voice. By way of comparison, go to my Flashback Friday post on the band for a look at the "Classic" sound.

This album got my "Wow" Meter Broken. The only thing linking the two Audio Adrenaline's is the name, and that's a good thing. Both are superior products so there can be no comparison. In retrospect 5 Emeralds seems too low, but that's as high as the meter goes. Kings and Queens is lacking in "adrenaline" but Kevin Max isn't a screamer. The lyrics shine here. There's even a bit of snark.

"A new face, all new friends, a new medicine. I don't need a big big house, a new job, with the same benefits."
"It's a Christian ship but she's sinking quick. Now my life's a mess and I want to change it".

Now don't tell me that it's a coincidence that Audio A's first hit was Big House. Or That Kevin Max had a poem at the end of Supernatural that was called "there's a treason at sea". A little bit of attitude prevails.

Click on the highlighted album title to get the download through Amazon and support the Night Beat at the same time. Welcome Back Audio Adrenaline. Until next time, I am Awaiting Your Reply.