SYFFAL – 22 April 2011

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The Elected – Bury Me In My Rings

By: Pete Rappaport

Album Rating: 9

Anyone that knows me knows that I had a profound love for Rilo Kiley, and the day they were no more was a sad day. But then I remembered that Blake Sennett had his side project going on with The Elected. Oh wait, what’s that you say? They are done now too? Fast forward 5 years and all is right in the world again, but now I’ve been waiting 5 years for Blake to put out another album, and it is finally here, and I have very high expectations! 5 years was too long to wait for the new LP Bury Me In My Rings which drops Tuesday, May 17th. On the other hand if this is what 5 years away will give me, I’d do it again in a heartbeat, as much as that would pain me. I suppose sometimes an artist just needs to take a break from the music to really put together an album he or she believes is their best work. No question here whether or not the wait was worth it. My ears are a slave to their sound, which the best way I can describe, is that of a modern day Beach Boys, in the way that they both have this similar west coast style in singing about love, girls, and all that comes with it, mixed with a little Elliot Smith.

From the first time I ever heard The Elected, I immediately heard traces of influence from Elliot Smith. Bury Me In My Rings gives us a reminder of the The Elected we used to love, The Elected that we missed, and The Elected to come in the future (or so I hope). Tracks like Jailbait and Trip Round the World fall right into line with what I expected to hear on this album, nothing that tries too hard, or goes in a direction that I’ve never heard before. But what really made this album stand out for me were the new sounds coming from Sennett on tracks like Go For The Throat that has hooks that I’ve grown fond of from bands like Arcade Fire. This is not my attempt to compare The Elected and Arcade Fire, I am simply stating that there are new songs that play to what I like in other artists. Then you come across songs like This Will Be Worth It, which has vocals and instrumentals that sounds like they belong on a Pink Floyd album. There is even a touch of Rilo Kiley-esqe guitar sounds not common on previous The Elected projects, on tracks like the first single Babyface. I think one of the other things that really was interesting about this album was being able to hear what 5 years away from the music world did for him. There is nothing that sounds forced on the 3rd album, and that is part of what the break was about for Sennett; the need to disconnect and get back to the root of why he was making music, because it clearly got to a point with both his projects that something was not going the way he wanted them to. All in all this album gives a new listener a great landscape of who The Elected are, and gives long time fans a chance to relive the good old days and look forward to what lies ahead.

The Elected will kick off the tour in Los Angeles on May 17th (album release day) at The Troubadour, followed by a show on May 24th in NYC at The Mercury Lounge.

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