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“Wittiness, familiarity and change keep runaway train Dave Pirner on track”
Minneapolis, MN▼ Article continues below ▼
Soul Asylum’s original members Dave Pirner and Dan Murphy have retained Tommy Stinson as their “Replacement” bassist and Michael Bland is definitely their punchiest, best drummer ever. The supergroup has now played together long enough to develop camaraderie and create a new, tight sound that adds Stinson on harmonies along with Murphy, allowing them to finally deliver another album of Soul Asylum’s usual mixed bag of genres (rock, alt-country, pop, jazz,etc…).
Delayed Reaction tries to duplicate the band’s famous live energy through several fast, catchy rock and pop tunes such as “Gravity,” “The Streets” and the cheeky, anti-war “Let’s All Kill Each Other.” Inversely, Pirner’s softer side shines through at times, with music and vocals showing tenderness on the slow, jazzy, anti-love songs “Cruel Intentions” and “I Should’ve Stayed in Bed,” which features dissonant strings framing sleepy-sounding vocals. Pirner’s flexible vocal abilities also reach the alt-country side on “Into the Light” and “By the Way.” Additionally, Pirner’s usual witty lyricisms about life range from playful, poetic and powerful to cynical, searing and seething, sometimes in the same song, as in “Take Manhattan.” Overall, more songs feature keyboards than the Minneapolis band’s last release, The Silver Lining, but guitars remain the dominant force.
Produced by Soul Asylum and John Fields
Mixed by Paul David Hager and John Fields
Mastered by Howie Weinberg
Recorded at Flowers