Akron/Family Love Is Simple

Akron/Family Love Is Simple
Leading the nouveau hippy charge, Akron/Family are known for their creative unconventionality and the fact that nothing really sounds alike. Believers in tapping into some unknown creative force, their weird chemistry is amazing to behold live and even better when they turn down their predilection for skronk-y weirdness. Well, bless the Earth, this is their most beautiful, energetic and streamlined album to date, but there are still some sonic surprises. Putting their group singing and roots-y harmonies through a good workout, they throw things into the stratosphere with the galloping "Ed Is A Portal” and the catchy-as-hell, classic rock-influenced "I’ve Got Some Friends.” Indeed, the band’s dichotomy between sun-dappled folk and ripping guitar rock is best seen on standout "There’s So Many Colors,” which starts aimlessly enough before the guitars start wailing away with the band’s flawless vocal harmonies around the halfway mark. If you’ve been wary of Akron/Family, this is the album for you. Not only does it cut to the heart of this vibrantly original band but it is also a damn fine record that sets fire to the senses. (Young God)