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Though currently based in Toronto, the Rural Alberta Advantage draw upon the Prairie Province heritage of lead singer/songwriter Nils Edenloff for inspiration. The RAA’s sparse, keening style of country-rock (akin to Son Volt, except edgier) provides a sturdy vehicle for Edenloff’s tense, unsettled lyrics. “Sleep All Day,” “The Air” and “Frank, AB” wrap palpable longing within blankets of melancholy, while “The Dethbridge In Lethbridge” and “Luciana” seethe with regret and self-recrimination. If such themes sound a bit heavy, they are leavened by Edenloff’s spiky guitar strokes and Paul Banwatt’s brisk, nicely splashy drum work. Especially tasty is the band’s playing on “Don’t Haunt This Place” (a jittery slice of post-breakup angst) and “Four Night Rider” (matching a galloping tempo with an uplifting lyric). The pastoral, fitfully hopeful “In the Summertime” brings this emotionally conflicted album to a satisfying close. While the RAA’s songs seem rooted in a specific time and place, there’s a universal quality to their tales of bruised love and strangled aspirations.
I'm one to agree Saddle Creek produces the greatest indie artists out there, and here is, no doubt, another.
You will play this one way more than five times.
I want to listen to every band this drummer has played in. The band itself knows how to write a great song with substance, but this drummer is very creative. I bought this album on a blind-buy, and it was a very pleasant surprise; it's a new indie favorite.
This was hard, this was fun, we should do this again
I found this little chess nut when it came out in 2008. It is one of the best albums of last year hands down. Every song on it is a gem in its own right. It's definently worth a listen if you are into Neutral Milk Hotel or Clap Your Hands Say Yeah. The lyrics ring true and are sung with a heart piercing sincerity that is truly rare. The RAA just just play music, they mean it. Every word. Every note. I could listen to this album begining to end multiple times in a row. Put simply. Buy this album. Do it now.
Formed: 2005 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Years Active: '00s, '10s
Top Albums and Songs By The Rural Alberta Advantage
||Don't Haunt This Place||Hometowns||2:35||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Frank, AB||Hometowns||3:25||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||In the Summertime||Hometowns||2:36||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Stamp||Departing||3:08||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Drain the Blood||Hometowns||2:48||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Tornado '87||Departing||3:48||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Eye of the Tiger||Drain the Blood||3:00||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Drain the Blood||Drain the Blood||2:48||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||The Ballad of the RAA||Hometowns||3:28||$0.99||View In iTunes|
||Edmonton||Hometowns||3:50||$0.99||View In iTunes|