CD Review: Vaudevileins “Magician”

The Chicago-based band called Vaudevileins is a musical outfit that seems to switch its sound from one track to the next. Bandmates Bill Aldridge on bass, Brennan Chouinard on drums and vocals, and vocalist/guitarist Jeff Julian recently added guitarist Evan Mohler into the mix. That newly-solidified version of the band seems to be rather open to creating tracks that contain any number of influences and musical elements that keep the band’s music from becoming stale.

On one track, Vaudevileins’ (pronounced vaude-villains) sound feels like a trio with one dominant guitar, while other tracks feature a definite double guitar sound. One track may feel as if it was influenced by modern-day Rock and Roll while others have a more timeless feel to their musical styles.

The current version of the band Vaudevileins with new guitarist Evan Mohler just recorded and released their second full-length album of music. That new release is entitled Magician.

Magician from Vaudevileins begins with the track “Sea Anemone”. The song begins with the double guitar attack of Jeff Julian and Evan Mohler as they create a double-layered guitar riff that adds to the Alternative Rock sound from the entire band. That riff helps lay the foundation for the sound of the track. As the band proceeds in making the track, Julian and Mohler start adding more depth to the music with two-part guitar riffs. The music of the track “Sea Anemone” contains a sound that belongs on Alternative Rock radio formats. The lyrics about trying to survive as a fish in a sea undergoing change because of Man’s influence on the sea and its environment gives the listener something to think about.

The second track of the release is the album’s title track. “Magician” finds the band changing changing musical directions. In fact, the Prog-rock contained within the track feels as if the band Rush were the ones creating the song’s music. As you listen to the track, you can easily imagine Alex Lifeson, Neil Peart and Geddy Lee playing the music. And even though “Magician” does contain a large amount of Progressive Rock influence, Vaudevileins adds a generous amount of Commercial Rock influence to the song. While the music is very progressive in nature, you could easily imagine “Magician” being played on the radio.

With the track of “Sticky,” Vaudevileins create a song that would fit onto Alternative Rock radio formats back in the nineties. The strong guitar presence as well as the driving bass from Bill Aldridge gives the track a definite Alternative Rock influence.

It is with the very next track that Vaudevileins create a track with a timeless Rock and Roll approach. “Chasing Time” hits the listener with a very strong guitar riff before the rest of the band joins in to make music that would have been right at home during the Glam era of music or the Power Rock time period or even amongst today’s bands like The 1975, another band that exists to make music with a strong Rock and Roll backbone.”Chasing Time” contains enough of a commercial Rock and Roll sound that the track could easily find its way onto today’s radio formats.

The very next track finds the band changing the feel of the album. The track “Hell Jazz” begins with a lighter sound than anything else that had come before on the Magician release. A very gentle guitar plays for a few bars before the bass and drums join in to make up the slow-paced, laidback melody of the track. The inclusion of strings helps to produce a track that ultimately sounds like something that could have been produced by either Pink Floyd or Queensryche . The reason for that feel is that Bill Aldridge created an orchestration for the track that has a definite Michael Kamen vibe to it. “Hell Jazz” may stick out as far as the track on Magician is concerned, but the song gives the listener a much different perspective on Vaudevillians’ music.

With the song of “Fake Cigarette,” the band seems to cross musical eras and influences to create a track that has a timeless sound. The song begins with a beat created by Bill Aldridge’s bass and Brennan Chouinard’s drums. The drum/bass intro brings to mind something from the Glam Rock era of Rock and Roll. The criss-crossing of the guitar through the left and right channels also seems to give the song a definite retro feel. And then, when the entire band begins playing, the track takes on a more modern-day approach to its sound. “Fake Cigarette” ultimately feels right at home on today’s radio stations that feature Modern Rock formats.

The Magician release from Vaudevileins comes to a close with the track “Devils”. The song begins with an instrumental passage that contains an electrified Rock and Roll feel before the band changes directions and brings in an acoustic feel that is reminiscent of something from the band T-Rex. The electric introduction leading into the acoustic approach makes for an interesting shift in sound and direction. The dual approaches at once create one track that shows off the talent and versatility of the musicians that make up the band Vaudevileins.

Magician from Vaudevileins is a solid Rock and Roll release. The band makes use of many different styles, influences and sounds to make a very strong album. The ten tracks on the album are so varied that they keep the listener wanting to hear more.

Click on the album cover below to check out the Magician album from Vaudevileins:

Magician

 

 

 

 

 

 

For more information, Check out the band’s PR Firm, Novo Management and Publicity.

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