CD Review: The Celebration Army S/T

The Celebration Army is a Toronto-based Rock and Roll quartet who is “taking back the night and breathing new life into the roots of the most inspiring genre of our generation”. Comprised of Oliver Pigott on vocals, Nelson Sobral on guitar & backup vocals, Leandro Motta on bass & backup vocals and Troy Larabie on drums, the band has created a style of the genre that takes the group’s sound back to the Classic Rock era of the music. Combining Rock, Soul, and Blues, The Celebration Army’s Rock and Roll style helps to bring back a little strength to the music that has been losing a lot of energy over the last few years. To help bring back that energy to the style of Rock and Roll, The Celebration Army has put out a few releases. Along with two EPs, the band has just recently put out a new self-titled album.

The Celebration Army went into the studio and spent two days recording tracks that would become their self-titled debut album. That “live in the studio” feel can definitely be felt within the twelve tracks that make up the band’s self-titled release.

The 2017 self-titled album from The Celebration Army begins with the track “When Your Love is on the Loose”. A straight-out Rock and Roll track, the sound of the track brings to mind underground bands from the eighties like Junk Monkeys who created straight-out Rock and Roll. The track also seems to suggest a little influence from the band The Del Lords. The song “When Your Love is on the Loose” brings the listener back to the days of the late eighties/early nineties in a good way. While the track feels very reminiscent of that time period, the underground feel of the track would have easily fit on college radio at the time.

With the next track of “Hang it Up,” The Celebration Army slows the pace of the music down a little. And even with that slower pace, the band doesn’t give any less energy to their music. While “When Your Love is on the Loose” feels like straight-out Rock and Roll, the band adds a little Soul influence into the music of the track. The resulting song brings to mind something from Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. And unlike the previous track, “Hang it Up” would have fit well on commercial radio in the eighties.

An unmistakable Funk groove hits the listener in the first seconds of the track “In the Henhouse”. That groove created by Nelson Sobral on guitar, Leandro Motta on bass and Troy Larabie on drums help to create one of the most powerful moments on the entire release. And with the vocals from Oliver Pigott that add some Soul to the track, “In the Henhouse” is the most listener-friendly track up to that point.

On the next track, The Celebration Army adds a lot of Alternative Rock influence to their new album. The slightly orchestral nature of the music on the track and the operatic vocals from Oliver Pigott on “Don’t Hold Me Now” combine to create one track that stands out when compared to the rest of the music.

“Motorbike” is one track that shows off The Celebration Army’s Blues influence. With this track, the band adds that Blues influence with slightly stronger guitars, harmonica and stronger basslines to create a track that all but screams “Canned Heat”. “Motorbike” is another track that stands out as the band creates a moment unlike anything else up to that point.

Like the track “In the Henhouse” a little earlier in the album, the song “Risky Business” contains a strong groove to the music. The strong bassline adds that Funky feel to the song while the guitar helps to add the melody to the track. The lyrics to the refrain of the track are very easy and seem to just flow, creating very easy lines that feel very infectious that lend themselves to singalongs. “Risky Business” was released by the band previous to the actual album coming out. That helped to promote the album with a very strong track that deserves multiple listenings.

On the track “Dust My Dirt,” The Celebration Army creates a song that feels as if it should have come out of the seventies. The band calls upon their influences from groups from that era as they create a slow-paced jam that brings to Eric Clapton. The track contains that feel before the band picks up the energy for a few seconds. The softer/rockier approaches alternate throughout the track until the final few seconds when the band sends the track off with a very strong guitar solo that contains a Jimi Hendrix-like sound.

The 2017 self-titled album from The Celebration Army focuses on musical styles that fit into the Classic Rock genre. The twelve tracks on the release make good use of the band’s influences. Whether using straight-out Rock and Roll sounds or more underground influences, each track from The Celebration Army is very strong and the twelve tracks combined together make for one solid album.

To check out the music from The Celebration Army, click HERE for the band’s song “Risky Business”.

To check out the self-titled release from The Celebration Army, click on the album cover below:
Celebration Army CD

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