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iTunes Review

Rogue Wave suffered the death of former bassist Evan Farrell and singer Zach Rogue slipped discs in his neck in the three years leading up to their fourth album, 2010’s Permalight. Yet, it’s a jubilant disc of power pop as skewered by the crusty tones of vintage synthesizer and handclap driven drum rhythms. The harmonies add an extra sheen of enthusiasm as this collection of “triumph over adversity” dials up the happiness scale on tracks such as “Solitary Gun,” “Good Morning (The Future)” and “You Have Boarded.” “Sleepwalker” jolts along like the Parisian pop of fellow popsters Ivy as Rogue sings with the Sunday-morning sense of the Zombies’ Colin Blunstone, while “Stars and Stripes” kicks up like an upbeat Pernice Brothers tune. The band’s potential grandeur peaked with 2007’s Asleep At Heaven’s Gate, after spending their early days as Rogue’s bedroom demos (and solo project). With Permalight, the band has found a modest balance to continue seeking out the sun in between the rainclouds.

Customer Reviews

give it a chance

I know a lot of people had a virulent reaction to the release of "Good Morning (The Future)" as a single, but this album as a whole is not that big of a departure for Rogue Wave, and it's pretty amazing. Stand outs for me are "Stars and Stripes", "We Will Make a Song Destroy", and "Solitary Gun." Is this different from Asleep at Heaven's Gate or Descended Like Vultures? Yes, but it's still recognizably Rogue Wave, and it shows them pushing forward and exploring new styles. It's really held up to repeated listenings, and although I was a bit cautious myself after hearing the single, I'm now really embracing this album. Give it a serious chance before you rush to judgment.

First Listen First Impression

I'm always a bit nervous to listen to a new album from a band I love. I never know if I'm going to want to go where they want to take me. The release of Good Morning (The Future) made me even more nervous.

This is not Asleep at Heaven's Gate. This is not Out of the Shadow. It's a bit more Descended Like Vultures than either of the other two. It's also a bit of a new direction at times. It is still very clearly Rogue Wave, and I am convinced this album will grow on me. Immediate standouts, for me, include "We Will Make a Song Destroy" and "I'll Never Leave You" as these songs are most indicative of the Rogue Wave I fell in love with. Nobody should expect a band to stay the same. That would be a terrible shame. This album is a step forward for the Rogue Wave, but it maintains a relationship with the past, and I am convinced that it will grow on me and become an album I love as deeply as the rest.

During the first listen, there were no tracks that truly swept me away into a state of musical bliss, as occurred with each of their other albums and especially their iTunes Exclusive EP. But a few grabbed my attention, and I'm definitely going to spend some time with Permalight.

This album has something for everyone

I've listened to this album many times and it keeps getting better with every listen. Its something I noticed with Rogue Waves music. It grows on me and I feel I hear something different or hear it from a different perspective every-time. This album has something for everyone I think - good for old fans and those who have never heard of Rogue Wave before. I didn't think I would like the faster paced "dance hall" style songs, afraid they might be too poppy, but I have to say I can't help but tap my toes and sing along. If your not a fan of the special effects and fast tempo of songs like Good Morning I recommend looking for the acoustic versions on the web. The reveal that these songs are very versatile and are very solid songs. No doubt Rogue Wave will and has received some backlash from the some of the fan community for changing things up a bit. Some people just don't like change. I for one admire their courage for trying something new. I think it works... for me anyhow.


Formed: 2002 in Oakland, CA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Rogue Wave formed in 2002 when a newly unemployed Zach Rogue left his San Francisco home, visited friends in New York City, and returned to California with nearly a full album's worth of textured, cerebral indie pop. Rogue then quit his post in his previous group, the Desoto Reds, and finished the album, which was released on Rogue's own Responsive label under the title Out of the Shadow. As he was completing the record, Rogue decided to form a band in order to perform the material live, and he soon...
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