A few months back I happened upon a review of Delusions, the latest album from Fort Collins, CO 4-piece Elway and was struck by what this particular reviewer had to say about the album and so I decided I need to check it out for myself although not without my own trivial hesitations. You see I grew up a fan of the NFL’s Cleveland Browns and Denver Broncos quarterback great John Elway is quite possibly the most hated sports figure of my youth. He was directly responsible for crushing the dreams I had for my Brownies in both 1987 and 1988. Thankfully Elway the band has helped diminish the pain of those crushed dreams with a fantastic offering in Delusions.
Delusions kicks off with “3-4 Eleanor” a mid-tempo introduction of sorts with the title cleverly referencing the song’s time signature as well as a nod to the band’s former name (3-4 Eleanor). The first 7 or 8 tracks of the album are a group bouncy up-tempo punk rock fare namely “Passing Days”, “San Mateo” and my personal album highlight “Song For Eric Solomon To Sing” which, around the 1:10 mark, initially made me recall NOFX’S title track from Wolves in Wolves’ Clothing. Singer/Guitarist Tim Browne’s voice straddles a line from easygoing, almost simply speaking, to the frustration of his laments causing his voice to rage to a melodic hoarseness that is becoming more and more common amongst many bands. Thankfully for him his vocal style and storytelling are part of the strengths of Delusions.
The last 3 tracks of the album have the band slowing down to a middle of the road tempo. Browne and fellow guitarist Brian Van Proyen’s guitar work shines through as well as Joe Henderer and Garret Carr, on bass and drums respectively, holding it all together on the backline. I can’t really say enough about the guitar tones on this record. A lot of young guitar players just plug in, dial the distortion up full bore and go hog wild while these guys ease off to a subtle overdrive that gives their songs a clarity that isn’t always found in the type of music.
Elway draw a lot of comparisons to several other bands of the Midwest (The Lawrence Arms, The Replacements amongst others). I hate trying to compare bands unless the similarities are glaringly obvious. That said Elway (maybe they should become “el Way” so as to avoid the threatened legal action from that assbag John Elway) are a solid band who’ve made their name touring the crapholes and basements of America and gave fans of honest and sincere punk rock another great record to enjoy for years to come.
On July 1 the band hinted on their Facebook page that a vinyl release may be in the future and while writing this I checked back in on it and Suburban Home Records will be handling a vinyl release of 1000 copies (333 on white, 667 on orange). Count me in!
Buy on Red Scare HERE
More info on vinyl release HERE
Follow: @elwayband @redscaretoby @suburbanhome