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Best Of The Batch: Straw Dogs
Tell The Rising Sun
By MuzikMan
(more articles from this author)
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Artist: Straw Dogs
Title: Tell the Rising Sun
Genre: Rock-Pop
Label: Crafty Records

The Straw Dogs pick up where Hum Of The Motor left off last year at this time with an equally gratifying recording titled Tell The Rising Sun. I see a band firmly fixed with a successful formula. Although they are extremely talented and have the ability to change if they wish, they have decided to hold the line and continue to pump out song after song of high-powered pop (with exception of the closing track).

Jettisoned by guitars reminiscent of some great bands from the ‘60s, with more modern comparisons to R.E.M. and strong abilities in song writing and the addition of the appropriate music to complete the circle, they pull you into every track and never let loose. With the polished lead vocals of Dave von Beck (guitars) and soaring harmonies of Darren Smith (guitars, keys) and the rhythm section of Casey Miller (drums) and Eric Bryson (bass), they never miss a beat. This unit does not seem to be lacking in any area.

“Amelia” is quickly becoming a fan favorite and it starts the CD off in good form, setting a high standard to maintain for the entire recording. “Troubles Down” draws the curtain on the proceedings and steps away from the norm with a distinct bluesy country flavor, perhaps indicating a new direction to come on the next album. I found it interesting how they ended it this way leaving you wondering what could be next.

I am actually a bit surprised that Hollywood has not discovered this band; their music is well suited for movie soundtracks and commercials. This is by no means a show of disrespect towards the band; rather it is a compliment to their broad based appeal and diverse talent. With this much ability at their disposal I hope to see some more experiments musically with this band on their next album. I have no doubt they could pull it off with great success.

01. Amelia (3:40)
02. That One (2:57)
03. Not Gone (4:36)
04. Counting On You (3:51)
05. Opened My Eyes (3:09)
06. Beautiful (2:34)
07. Sour Apple Fields (3:47)
08. Crush Of Me (3:26)
09. Guess Again (3:35)
10. Traded Her Love (3:15)
11. I Remember (3:34)
12. Troubles Down (3:32)



Dave von Beck-lead vocals, acoustic and electric guitars
Darren Smith-electric guitars, vocals, keyboards
Casey Miller-drums
Eric Bryson-electric and upright bass


Evan Brubaker-bass
Jeff Fielder-dobro, electric guitar
Dan Tyack-Pedal Steel

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