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Intriguing new album from Crowded House

In the modern music industry, longevity is a very rare feat. With constantly shifting opinions of what is classified as worthwhile music, new genres taking the popular spotlight, and individual band members often looking to take their music into new and different directions, it isn't uncommon for a band to release an album or two and then break up, leaving their fans yearning for more.

This is not the case with Crowded House: they are one of those rare bands that have managed to overcome adversity. Beginning their musical career in 1986 with their self-titled debut, Crowded House has since released four more albums between 1988 and 2007. Although the group went on a hiatus between their 1993 album "Together Alone" and their 2007 comeback album "Time on Earth," the group proves they are here to stay with their latest release, "Intriguer."

The overall tone of this album is what most would expect from Crowded House. It's a very mellow album that for the most part eases the listener through its ten tracks. Although a solid album from start to finish, "Intriguer" really has three notable tracks that really shine. Opening up with the band's first radio released single, "Saturday Sun," starts off nicely and gives each member's respective instruments equal play time, as the bass grooves and shimmering guitars kick in toward the chorus.

Halfway through the album comes the second notable track, "Isolation." The track is easy-going with a very atmospheric feel to it, enhanced by keyboard effects, and is nicely complimented with guest female vocals. The final standout track comes from the guitar-driven "Inside Out." This track deviates most from the sound of the rest of the album; it is very catchy and upbeat and allows the band to show off their guitar prowess, ending the album with its best track by far.

The rest of the tracks on the album flow well but may unfortunately sound a little bit like filler. Regardless, anyone who is a fan of Crowded House or is just looking for something new to check out this summer should definitely give this album a spin or two. And if you are "intrigued," Crowded House will be playing three dates at the Bowery Ballroom on July 19-21st before playing a show at the Wellmont in Montclair, NJ on the 23rd.


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