Sam Roberts: Love at the End of the World

By: Dennis Cook

This is the record Sam Roberts has been building towards since 2002. Stripped of excesses, this is lean, melodic rock at its fundamental best. In another era, Roberts and his band of Canadians would be stomping all over the charts, kin to Cheap Trick, The Raspberries and other FM giants capable of making dudes shout and little girls sigh.

The singing is terrific, guitars large and air riff inspiring, drums heavy in the distance and the songs so damn sing-along-able. What's not to like as the Queen-sized title cut billows and wails or bittersweet glower "Stripmall Religion" shuffles its grey day ways? Or maybe it's power pop gold like "Fixed To Ruin," spring-y New Wave saunter "Lions of the Kalahari" or Blitzen/Foxes-esque "Words & Fire" and "Sundance" that'll make a fan of you, but surely somewhere in this baker's dozen there lies something most folks are gonna totally adore. Love at the End of the World (released February 17 on Zoe Records) gets the full sweep of pop-rock much like Liam Finn or Matthew Sweet but layered with a bit more sincerity and natural gravity. When this one's playing you'll want to listen to little else, which is the mark of a truly excellent album.



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[Published on: 4/24/09]

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