Alright, so coming at you with some relatively new music.  Okay, relatively new to me.  Technically, the album has been out since 2008, but I only heard it on the airwaves about 2 months ago (Give or take a few months, probably give).  But this year for sure.  But the band is called Civil Twilight (Out of interest I found out that twilight can be divided into three different categories; civil twilight is the name given to the brightest portion of twilight.)

They’re an alt-rock group originally out of Cape Town, South Africa, but moved to LA and finally Nashville when their popularity picked up a bit. Why you would settle on Nashville after having lived in LA is beyond me. Not that I’m dissing Nashville or anything, but I see LA being a bit more…glamorous?  Perhaps there is an aspect of the music scene in Nashville I’m missing.  Then again LA may just not be everyone’s number one place to live.  I can’t exactly say it would be mine.

Anyways, these guys are a 3-piece band, consisting of two brothers and one of their classmates from high school.  One brother, Andrew McKellar, joined up with his classmate, Richard Wouters, to form a band.  They were set to have a rehearsal about a month out from the time of formation.  It was during that time in between that Andrew learned that his younger brother, Steven McKellar, was actually extremely talented at song-writing and singing.  Can’t exactly turn that down now, can you?

The line up is Steven on vocals, bass, piano, and keyboards (a lot when you consider that he was the last person to join the group…if he only played guitar rather than bass, he could be something like South Africa’s version of Matt Bellamy.  Not that you could surpass him at all.  Sorry Steven, don’t take any offence, but nobody can.), Andrew on guitar, and Richard on drums (who gave up guitar after Steven joined the band, and actually turned out to have learned it really well.  I’ll get to that in a bit.)

I must say, I truly like their sound.  The first song I heard was Letters from the Sky.  Caught off guard at the time, I exclaimed “Hot damn!”  Laughter from friends ensued.  Anywho, Andrew’s guitar playing sounds quite a lot like the Edge of U2, while Steven’s piano playing sounds rather Bellamy inspired.  His vocals even more so.  And Richard’s drumming, well, I applaud him for not taking the easy way out.  He dropped the guitar to take up drums, and really could have half assed his way through it.  I’ve seen it happen before (granted, it wasn’t with drums, and it was on an “extremely local” scale…).  But no, he did it right.  Just listen to the climax of Letters in the Sky…

But yeah, Civil Twilight.  Good for more than just the times of post-dawn and pre-dusk.

Letters from the Sky

‘Nuff said.

Human

I was struck by the solemn nature of the song.  You don’t see ballads being put out by too many bands these days.  At least, cliché ballads about guys losing the women of their dreams, etc.  Steven really belts it out in this one, especially during the chorus, where he breaks out the falsetto. Chilling…and yet, oh so enjoyable.

Perfect Stranger

In case you were to doubt the U2 influence, here it is.  Vocals like Bono (to some extent), guitar akin to the Edge.  Drumming…well okay, it’s not distinctly U2, but it’s still good.  My third pick of songs from the album. ‘Tis quite good.

 

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