They spell it the English way, and for jolly good reason. Colours have the crystalline sharpness of the Beatles before they turned acid . Colours have a rainbow sound, but you can distinguish one hue from another rather than fight through a haze of static, funky confusion, and screetching feedback. They also write love songs. Helping You Out has a kind of walk-up honesty that cuts through dreamy creamy gush lyrics: Washing your clothes when you're gone for the day and then hanging them out, helping you out.
The spectrum of Colours features Jack Dalton and Gary Montgomery, neither more than a quarter century old, both of whom are professional musicians. They write the songs that lead guitarist Rob Edwards, drummer Chuck Blackwell, and bass guitarist Carl Radle help spread on a palette of sound.
They will tackle a mess of changing time signatures, such as their Bad Day At Black Rock, Baby, where they move through six sharps from 6/8 to 4/8 to 3/8, then 5/4, and even 5/8, changing rhythms with the quick ease of the most wigged-out electronic classic composer.
Yet, underneath is a straight, raw narrative about a tragic hero who, unlike the dramatic victims of a folk song, knows a gently dissonant sound full of the blues, the beat of a street band, the horns of a jazz connection, even the words of folk nostalgia. Brother Lou's Love Colony is a free-form cantata about the hippie colony in California. It ends with a classy coda underscored with, of all sounds, bagpipes. In Rather Be Me, a from Morocco or the whine of a sitar eaving an Indian raga.
All that in the rarely used key of E flat minor lends a greater weirdness to the song. Colours takes a trip in Cataleptic, richly harmonizing over eerie organ music, or rips off a bold, bouncy Lovin' and Don't You Realize in a style that smacks of music hall or vaudeville energy. So Colours does have that broad spectrum of electric sounds so prized in today's rock, but they pull it off without indulging in jarring cliches. And, with a youthfull joyness, they don't paint it black.
by Jon Borgziner
1. Bad Day At Black Rock, Baby - 3:27
2. Love Heals - 2:36
3. Helping You Out - 3:00
4. Where Is She - 2:26
5. Rather Be Me - 3:38
6. I'm Leaving - 2:48
7. Brother Lou's Love Colony - 4:29
8. I Think Of Her (She's On My Mind) - 2:13
9. Lovin' - 1:40
11.Don't You Realize - 1:56
12.Tommorrow's Women - 2:07
13.All At Once - 1:43
14.Right Or Wrong - 1:51
15.She'll Be The One - 2:37
16.She Just Wanted Kisses - 2:08
17.Angie - 3:18
18.God Please Take My Life - 6:06
19.When Will You Be Coming Home? - 2:28
20.I Tried To Make You Love Me Last Night - 3:31
21.Grey Day - 3:55
22.Smillin' In Toronto - 4:10
23.Hyannis Port Soul (Lost You To The Wind) - 2:18
24.Run Away From Here - 1:59
25.It's Time To Tell You - 4:05
26.Announcement - 1:56
27.I'll Be Your Friend - 2:17
28.You're High - 2:38
All songs written by Jack Dalton and Gary Montgomery
*Gary Montgomery - Piano
*Rob Edwards - Lead Guitar
*Jack Dalton - Guitar
*Carl Radle - Bass
*Chuck Blackwell - Drums