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The October – Bye Bye Beautiful

Hailing from Kentucky, Bye Bye Beautiful is The October’s sophomore venture after Push Me Off the Side of the Earth. Comprised of members Dustin Burnett (vocals, guitar, keyboard), Michael Lloyd (bass, backup vocals), Aaron Spraggs (drums, backup vocals), and Ryan Cain (guitar, keyboard, backup vocal), the group models their sound after 80’s new wave, with a modern twist.

There are many choice sayings about critics; most of which imply that these analysts are frustrated and incapable artists. For instance, have you seen Roger Ebert’s movie? It’s terrible. I have never aspired to songwriting, because I know my limits. My skills lie in the harsh judgment of other people’s heartfelt efforts. The few times I have been moved to try my hand at poetry read like that of a high school freshman in his first creative writing class. Rhyme structure comes at the outset of class, and I have never progressed past AABB or in a stretch, ABAB.


That said; most of the songs on Bye Bye Beautiful rely heavily on simple rhyme structures like these.

For instance, take the first song “Through the Waves and Stars.” It begins with, “Staring at the ceiling/Dealing with your feelings/Feel my heart with your hand/ Understand it’s not what you planned.” See if you can figure out the rhyme structure. This sort of thing is not unforgivable, but after an entire album you’re over it.

Most of the songs on the album inhabit a space that is high energy, with guitar effects creating a spacey hollow sound. “Bedroom Girls” has a catchy pop sound with Burnett showing his vocal range by belting out the title lyrics.

“On Fire” launches out with a thumping beat and heavy guitar riff, breaking away from the sound of the rest of the album, but soon falls back into familiar territory.

While energetic, Bye Bye Beautiful never manages to sound fresh. Burnett did a very good job of producing and mixing the album, but sometimes it is better to outsource the job to a fresh set of ears. Ultimately, the basic songwriting limits the musical efforts. The October is a band with promise; it just needs directions towards a more adventurous space.


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