Raine Maida - We All Get Lighter – Album Review

Coalition Music

www.rainemaida.net

By: Pete Crigler

In between working, recording and touring with Our Lady Peace and writing and producing for other artists, Raine Maida has found the time to release his second full-length solo album. Almost five years since his first album, he has managed to turn things down from Our Lady Peace’s last few records and has turned in what amounts to a slow, acoustic based folk record with some tinges of protest in the lyrics.

The opening track, “How to Kill A Man” is a very melodic, chill of a song with very meaningful lyrics and a good melody. As usual, Raine’s vocals are spot-on and remain one of the standouts in modern alternative rock. “Rising Tide” comes across as a kind of protest song but it manages to work well, complete with background trumpet. All in all, these tracks are going to be very different from Our Lady Peace material, but that’s what his fans have been expecting from Raine and his solo material over the years.

“Montreal” is a decent enough song but plods along on an uncertain path. “Not Done Yet” is a very thoughtful and powerful acoustic track with a lot of heart, soul and emotion thrown into the mix to make the song all the more astonishing. Raine has always been an artist full of intensity, powerful emotion and thoughtful and inspiring lyricism and this record does not disappoint in any of those areas in the slightest bit. “This is Gonna Hurt” follows the same path as “Not Done Yet” but yet still manages to come across as another epic song. The major thing heard throughout the record is his dynamic voice which can be heard in full effect all throughout the disc.

The worst thing about this record is its brevity, as it feels as though there should be more than eight songs. Seemingly they run so quickly that I personally felt as though it played more like an EP.

After mining almost an EP’s worth of quiet acoustic material done largely by himself with the help of some guests, most notably his wife, Chantal Kreviazuk and some others on piano and strings, he finally manages to turn the volume up on “SOS,” which is without a doubt the heaviest track on the record and is probably the closest to anything OLP to come up. The track is very good and simple and manages to maintain its crunch throughout.

On the other hand, you have “Drink of You,” which is, without a doubt, the most maudlin sounding track presented here. It just comes off as something destined to wind up on a love themed mix tape. Closing track “Numbers,” which is a bit better than “Drink of You” serves to heighten the overall mood of the record.

In the end, the record is decent but as I already mentioned, it feels too short. One wants to feel that when they listen to an album that they’ve had a complete experience instead of one that’s been slashed prematurely.