For all the potential that The Buddyrevelles may ultimately have in their simple bass lines and upbeat tempos, the fact that their lyrics leave much to be desired and are sung by a vocalist highly lacking in any sort of emotion when performing them, that aforementioned potential is often wasted. The Buddyrevelles’ album Don’t Quit starts the listener out with some pretty hip beats that could make any hipster’s toe tap along. But once singer and guitarist Aaron Grant gets going on the lyrics, all interest fades. The undertone of a deep monotone voice talking along with the majority of the songs adds a weird, almost creepy element to these unimpressive pop ballads. The voice seems completely out of place next to Grant’s cheery tones.
The album reaches its peak with songs five and six, “Foreigner” and “I Dream of Rodney.” The variety of pace in “Foreigner” makes it unique to the other songs on the album, and is a stark improvement in terms of the variation in vocals as well. “I Dream of Rodney” takes it back a notch in pep. This chilled out and toned down version of The Buddyrevelles reveals much more talent than the upbeat premises that the band is seemingly building itself upon.
Reminiscent of early ’70s, late ’60s music that created an atmosphere of cheeriness and glee, although everyone felt otherwise, The Buddyrevelles aren’t all that derivative in the long run, which should add some credit to the band. Their originality and risk in style and composition do deserve a nugget of respect, albeit a minor one. The vintage approach taken by the band falls short in execution, although good intentions are evident. It is possible that those good intentions were too contrived, too designed and over worked. The beauty of organic tribute may have been the goal, but ambivalent and tepid was the end product.
Still, it’s fitting that the band’s album is titled Don’t Quit. That is probably the best suggestion one could offer to this group of musicians.