Just a year and some change after we last covered Strangely Alright’s “Nisqually,” the band has returned with a brand-new single entitled, “Not The End.” Released a couple weeks ago on September 14th, the band has triumphantly returned to spread their message of “Love always wins, so don’t be a dick.” Truly a band a kin to my heart, and fellow Pacific Northwesterners to boot! And that being said, before we get into the new single, let’s get some important info out there for anyone in the Tacoma area November 4th: Tickets for their show at McMenamin’s Spanish Ballroom are officially available HERE. It’s an all-ages show, $15 in advance, and $20 at the door. Strangely Alright will be joined by special guests Champagne Sunday and Stargazy Pie. Performing live is a major element of experiencing this band, so I hope to see you there! (And I hope they also open the show with their somehow even more psychedelic cover version of “Within You and Without You” intro medley, but that’s just me and my Beatles bias).
On to the single, in comparison to some of the previous releases, I would say this particular track is more of a rocker. The reverberated distortion on the lead guitars and steady driving bass are reminiscent of a late 90s / early 2000’s alternative hard rock song, breaking off into a chaotic dissonance and resolving back to a pulsating steady back beat. Yet, Regan Lane’s Beatle-esque melodic approach and exuberant delivery keeps it all …. Strangely Alright! I really enjoyed the dynamics of the song. Of notable experience in the production, the band had described their band member Ray (on keys) as a “kid in a candy store” crushing it on an authentic Hammond B3. It certainly does sound great and shimmering through my JBLs. Particularly on the “oh-whoa-oh-oh” parts of the pre-chorus right before the hook.
What’s also of interest about this single, is that it is the second of a four-song arc that began this year with the single, “Life in 3.” I thought that was a pretty cool idea. We are all familiar with concept albums, but I don’t believe I have ever seen a band apply a “concept” to a string of singles. According to the band, the arc is about time, entertainment, and death. In “This Is Not The End” Lane riffs, “Oh that’s entertainment!” during the bridge, so I am catching the concept there, as well as “The End” being a concept of time. In “Life in 3” there are lyrical innuendos of taking time to learn to forgive, but at the same time leaves bread crumbs lyrically leading to being “left behind” and everybody being “gone,” so I attribute some of that lyrical content to perhaps the death part of the arc? Curious as to what’s in store for the next two singles! I can’t imagine that after reading all that you wouldn’t be either. That wouldn’t be right. That would be strangely not alright.
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