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Album Review: Scenic Route to Alaska

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Scenic Route to Alaska

Long Walk Home

Independent (2016)

Students arrive at SAIT during a clear fall morning in Calgary on Saturday, Oct. 1, 2016. SAIT turns 100 on Oct. 16th, 2016, the celebration will feature a free concert by Dan Mangan. (Photo by William Geier/The Press)

Students arrive at SAIT during a clear fall morning in Calgary on Saturday, Oct. 1, 2016. SAIT turns 100 on Oct. 16th, 2016, the celebration will feature a free concert by Dan Mangan. (Photo by William Geier/The Press)

Scenic Route to Alaska’s newest album, Long Walk Home, is a polished indie-rock album that shows how much the band has grown since their last release.

The Edmonton band’s sound has switched from the grungier guitars of their 2014 release, Warrington, to clean guitar rifts that are so prominent they are even used to open the record.

The album starts with the band’s new single, “Coming Back,” a catchy, upbeat song that combines sleek guitars with driving beats underneath Trevor Mann’s crooning vocals.

Mann’s melodies, combined with the tight tempo of Shea Connor on drums, and Murray Wood on bass, give the album a mood that is almost reminiscent of The Strokes, but is set apart by Mann’s singing style.

While much of the record is filled with Mann’s traditional vocals, they also include sing-along lyrics that make their brand of indie-rock so infectious.

After the opening track, the overall sound slows down, yet some tracks, including their third single, “Love Keeps,” help maintain the energy.

While the rest of the album is slower, it capitalizes on focusing mostly on Mann’s voice, while the instruments provide a thematic background.

Songs such as, “Taking its Toll,” and the final track, “Love Is,” start slow and quiet, but build to satisfying conclusions.

It will be interesting to see how Long Walk Home transfers over to their live performance, since its predecessor, Warrington, could almost be a recording of one of their live sets—in the best way possible.

Long Walk Home, while quiet, is a sonically strong record that will likely push Scenic Route to Alaska into the next stage of indie-rock stardom.

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