Release Date: Sep 12, 2006
Record label: Eleven Seven Music
Genre(s): Rock, Alternative
Art Alexakis always was, for all intents and purposes, Everclear, so the fact that he's the only remaining original member on the group's seventh album Welcome to the Drama Club doesn't really affect the sound of the band all that much: it's still the same melodic grunge that has defined the group since Sparkle and Fade. But where the Everclear on that 1995 debut was a lean power trio, the Everclear on Welcome to the Drama Club is a full-bodied quintet comprised entirely of pros -- and that includes Alexakis, too, who long ago left behind the taut rock & roll that made "Santa Monica" a post-grunge classic. Like the two-part Songs from an American Movie -- the ambitious fourth and fifth album song cycles that derailed Everclear's commercial momentum -- this album finds a rock songwriter with lots of pop ambitions, dressing this record up with multi-tracked harmonies, swirling psychedelia, clavinets borrowed form '70s funk, occasional banjoes, and oodles of organs, and he now has a faceless but crackerjack collection of pros to help execute his plan precisely.