When most people think of the Pacific Northwest they’re drawn to images of flannel, dreary weather, and people on bikes. These three factors can prove to be a true test for bands struggling to make it. Who would wait out in the rain before doors open to see an indie band? Not many people. Mix that in with the preconceived notion of a moody, flannel army of followers; anyone outside the Rose City (Portland for those not familiar with it) may tend to stay away from the image they have in mind. This begs the question: What is the cure for sedentary fans refusing to get excited? The answer: AgesandAges.
I’ve long been a proponent of the Portland music scene and I am happy to report Alright You Restless is a must-have for fans of rolling folk anthem rock. Although we’re offered writings about isolation, this album is the forerunner for the Anti-Emo movement. Taking into account the general lack of passion found from fans at their shows, they’ve stepped up and offered a barrage of feel-good music. Using their sound in the most simplistic way then skyrocketing into the full spectrum each instrument seems to be capable of is a constant theme. When we’ve reached the boundary of a sound, they launch in to a harmonious anthem-like chant to fill in the gaps.
You’re simply unable to be grouchy when listening to this music. So take off that grumpy hat, grab your tambourine, and head down to “Camp AgesandAges.” It’s a place that defies sadness and makes you feel like you belong. It won’t be long until you’re chanting “We don’t want your enemies, save that trouble for yourself; it’s us or no one else in our own story!”
Seemingly immune to the typical sad recurring life cycle of a band, perform well live then struggle on recording or visa versa, this group of seven has seamlessly transitioned from stage to recording. With the aid of producer Kevin Robinson, whose foresight and talent is displayed just as boldly as the band, and Knitting Factory Records, A&A recorded the album in eight days. The credit for this brilliant release is equally distributed between the performers and the production as it was recorded in a “live” setting. Performing the songs all at once, just as they would on stage, brings a momentous experience to us listening. I do not think the album could have been delivered in the same way had it not been constructed as it was. When the songs hit the apex and the background comes in, it truly is a treat for your ears. Knowing the vocals were recorded on one single microphone adds a certain enchantment to the sound that has completely hooked me.
AgesandAges are living proof that the Pacific Northwest is quickly staking claim to the epicenter of fresh upbeat music regardless of the flannel, rain, and eco-friendly population; at least on two of those. I’m sure they’re working on the weather thing.