Thursday, October 14, 2010

Rocktober Album #10: Township - Coming Home (2008)

I've touted Township many times before here on GMYH, and with good reason. These guys play rock and roll the way it should be played.

Coming Home was the band's first full-length album, and the first of two albums they released in 2008. Their music is very much a throwback to the rock and roll of the late '60s and early '70s, and Coming Home is no excpetion. Among the influences that I hear are (in no particular order) Thin Lizzy, Santana, ELP, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, James Gang, Steppenwolf, early Aerosmith, early Bruce Springsteen, Grand Funk Railroad, early Doobie Brothers, Bad Company, Black Sabbath, and The Beatles. If I compare the songs to other bands, I don't mean to imply Township is copying anyone or that their sound is overly derivative. If anything, I make the comparisons as a compliment and to give you a frame of reference as to how awesome the band is.
The songs are, for the most part, 3-5 minutes, with a couple longer ones. There is not a bad song in the lot. Lead singer Marc Pinansky has a great rock voice. I was really impressed with Greg Beadle's drumming. The bassist, John Sheeran, is very tight as well, and the guitar work isn't too shabby either (FYI, they have since gotten a new guitarist, former Bang Camaro member Alex Necochea). It's too bad more new bands aren't making music like this.

I've been lucky enough to see them the two times they've ventured to Chicago, and they put on a hell of a show. And, to top it off, they're great guys as well -- happy to hang out after the show and drink some beers with the audience. Needless to say, I'm looking forward to the next time they come to Chicago.

Unfortunately, none of the songs from this album are on However, you can hear clips of the songs on iTunes or Amazon. Here is the band's official site and MySpace site (where you can hear some of their songs):

1. Round the Dust
This is a good start to the album, and it tells you what Township is all about. It's rock, it has great guitars, and that's about all you need to know.

2. Highway
"Highway" is a good straight-ahead driving rock and roll song, with a wicked guitar solo and a driving drum beat that you can't help but tap your foot to. Marc Pinansky had a solo acoustic version on his MySpace page a few years ago. I really like what they've done with it. This is also a fantastic live song.

3. Baby Rock Me
This one is a slower, ballad-esque song. This is one of those songs that sounds vageuly familiar, like you heard it when you were growing up in the mid '70s, even though you weren't alive back then and even though this song wasn't released until 2008.

4. Millions of People
This one is upbeat and catchy as hell. It almost sounding like early Doobie Brothers, but better. It has a sing-along chorus ("millions of people movin' along") and, well, it's just a happy song.

5. Sandy
"Sandy" is another upbeat, catchy song. It reminds me of early Springsteen (although not of the Springsteen song of the same name), along with some twin guitars that remind me of Thin Lizzy. I like this song a lot. It's just a really good rock and roll song.

6. Jesus
As you migth expect from a song called "Jesus," this song has some nice organ throughout the song and starts out sounding like a revival.

7. Home
This one is an anthemic, crescendoing, final-song-of-the-night kind of song. The first part of the song (first 5 minutes) has an arena rock feel to it, while the last three minutes is more uptempo and Pinansky repeats the phrase "love will lead us home," which kind of reminds me of "I'm Your Captain (Closer to Home)" by Grand Funk Railroad (a song that I'm a big fan of).

8. Big Bad
"Big Bad" is a ballsy, snarling, blues-based rock masterpiece with an awesome riff. Remember before you and I were born when Aerosmith used to rock? It's kind of like that, but darker and a little edgier. This one is also another great live song.

9. Crawl Back
This is uptempo and has a country rock/rockabilly feel to it. I would say it sounds kind of like the Eagles, but it's got a little more of an edge to it than the Eagles (like when the Stones play country rock songs), and I hate the fucking Eagles, whereas, I like this song.

10. Boo Hoo
This is another ballsy, cock rock kind of song, with a badass distorted riff and Zepplin-style vocals (not the same voice, but the same style). It's a good beer and whiskey drinking song -- the kind of song you wish more bands made these days.

11. With You All Along
"With You All Along" is another song that is seemingly broken into several parts. The beginning of the song is a driving rhythm section jam, with some space-age guitar here and there. The next part of the song has the feel of a slower Iron Maiden song combined with a later Zeppelin song. The Zeppelin-like qualities continue throughout, as the song slows down. This song is in the vein of the later Zeppelin (Houses of the Holy and after) longer, stoner-friendly mystical songs, with a little Pink Floyd mixed in, eventually fading into nothingness.

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