Fall Hard For Free Energy's Love Sign

By Tankboy in Arts & Entertainment on Jan 16, 2013 7:00PM

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Photo by Dominic Neitz

Free Energy's debut is one of those rare albums that still sounds good played on repeat today as it did when it was released a few years ago. What were the chances the follow up to that rager, Love Sign, could at least reach the same levels of our enjoyment? It turns out that the odds were amazingly in favor of not only reaching those heights of aural pleasure, they blew right past them to launch even higher in the musical stratosphere.

The band released half the album before it's official release, and it's telling that even doing that doesn't dilute any listen to the full disc. Kicking off with the exultant, cowbell driven "Electric Fever," the album continues to barrel through it's ten tracks without hitting a single sour note. Honestly, when we first started listening to Love Sign a month ago we were afraid that it's party vibe might grow trite if overplayed, but the honest enthusiasm of the band keeps that from happening. You know what else keeps that from happening? Free Energy has somehow figured out how to write incredible hooks that are spun out from years of crossing classic rock with indie quirk and countless beer bongs. Balancing that out is the inescapable feel that none of these dudes was ever cool, pining for girls across high school gymnasiums while the jocks got all the slow dances.

2013_01_free _energy_love_sign.jpgSo Love Sign walks a fine line, balancing between the Dionysian and the lovelorn. On one hand, this is party rock in its purest form. This is the sound of a non-existent thing; triumphant adolescent years. This is the pied piper of smiles and impending good times. But it's countered by a thread of unquenchable longing that makes it's way in and out of the songs on the album. It's when these are weaved together that Free Energy's full potential is realized. It creates a singular moment of time's that universally relatable on both the emotional and physical planes. It's the tension between these two sides of the band that creates such an indelible experience. As you sing along and hop around and generally just lose yourself in the tunes don't be surprised if you get confused as to whether your cheeks are dripping wet with sweat or tears of joy or tears of the eternally pining heart or all of the above.

Love Sign is the sound of party rock grounded by a core of passion in all its flavors. It's the sound of youth and wisdom and times fondly remembered and memories still ahead to be made. It's a sound we have yet to tire of, and hope we never do.

MP3: Free Energy "Electric Fever"
MP3: Free Energy "Dance All Night"

Free Energy plays as part of the Tomorrow Never Knows festival on Friday, January 18, at Schubas, 3159 N Southport, 9 p.m., SOLD OUT, 18+