Monday, June 28, 2010

Elf - Carolina County Ball

7/10

Carolina County Ball has slightly more variety than Elf's debut, but it still can't quite escape the trap of repetitive piano-based songwriting that doomed that album to mediocrity. There are definitely more songs here that stick out as being different than the others: for example, the title track has a horn section,"Ain't it All Amusing" uses an electric piano and has a somewhat funky feel, "Happy" has multi-layered backing vocals and a more languid pace.
However, I felt that there was just too much sedate material on this album for its own good- while the slower songs are somewhat spread out, songs like "Happy," the first half of "Rocking Chair Rock 'n' Roll Blues," the ridiculously underwritten "Blanche" and "Rainbow" (yes, he was writing about them even at this early date) aren't awful or anything, but I was really hoping for more harder rocking material. This still isn't metal by any stretch of the imagination, and while it isn't terrible at all, I still can't recommend this to Dio fans unless they're aware that it's not even remotely heavy.

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