Release Date: Oct 27, 2014
Record label: Side One Dummy
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Indie Rock
Restorations pretty much established themselves with LP2 in a bigger and more expansive way. This was the album that announced them in the way most bands want to be viewed or defined. As someone who took a while to get into them, I boast this about that record because it was the one that really won me over. In spades.
Since 2008, Philadelphia's Restorations have suffered from not being easily classifiable; there are elements of sprawling post-punk, gutsy Americana and charging Springsteen-esque rock in nearly every one of their tracks. Their third full-length is no different in that regard, but the band have ditched the murky and plodding touches that dragged down LP2, delivering nine uplifting and inspired tracks. The mystery lies in lead singer Jon Loudon's continued commenting on society in a paranoid manner while the rest of the band brim with enthusiasm; first single "Separate Songs" features Loudon snarling in a husky drawl in the vein of Bry Webb, lamenting how insular those around him have become.
Riot Fest 2014 will go down as the first large-scale punk festival powered almost entirely by nostalgia. The backward-looking bill featured something for every generation of punk-turned-grownup, from Cheap Trick’s vintage power pop to Mineral’s wistful emo. Younger bands still in their best years were pushed to the side stages or slotted to play for sparse crowds in the afternoon.
How you classify Philadelphia’s Restorations largely depends on your age. For those of an era beyond attending their 20-year high school reunion, Fugazi, Helmet and Archers of Loaf are touchpoints. Fan alumni of the Vans Warped Tour will likely err on the side of Lucero and Gaslight Anthem, neither of which quite match the predominant genre of the traveling festival’s origins.
Philadelphia indie rockers Restorations deliver a sprawling, noisy third album full of wide skies, big guitars, and a warm heartland feel. It's a sound they've been building slowly toward since commencing their recording career at the turn of the decade, and with the release of LP3 it feels like they have arrived somewhere. Their post-hardcore origins still echo in their willingness to play with time signatures and various progressive elements, but for the most part there's a feeling here of going from the gut and playing for the cheap seats.
Philadelphia's Restorations would probably punch you in your Buddy Holly glasses if you called them emo, but their creatively titled third album proves these bruisers have a sensitive side. When their trio of guitarists aren't busy auditioning for Ozzy or Springsteen, they summon dynamic, smartly-shaded echo caverns more reminiscent of Sunny Day Real Estate and Modest Mouse – elevating the nicotine-ravaged bloodletting of Jon Loudon, the toughest young old man at the bar, to lip-quiveringly dramatic heights. Towards the end of LP3, on "The Future," he laments that he "never had a future before." He's got one now.
Restorations — LP3 (SideOneDummy)<a href="http://restorationsmusic.bandcamp.com/album/lp3" data-mce-href="http://restorationsmusic.bandcamp.com/album/lp3">LP3 by Restorations</a>Philadelphia’s Restorations are not a subtle band. Their music booms. The guitars are loud, the vocals righteously delivered, the rhythms uptempo. This is a band that evokes a sense of determination throughout their music, and it’s carried off with a no-frills approach.