Let’s get one thing out of the way. I’m what may be considered a quasi-O’s-groupie. I think I dragged Scrappy to half a dozen shows over the past year, and I even listen to their first album, “We Are The O’s,” while I’m running. And it’s not even music appropriate for working out.
So, that being said, here’s our review of “Between the Two“, The O’s sophomore album.
The album leads off with “We’ll Go Walkin,” which has already set the scene for a music video wherein the O’s meander around East Dallas, fetching newspapers, bothering dogs and singing in front of trees. Or something like that. I think it’s a strong play for the local audience to start off a song, and an album, with a reference to Tietze Park (note to readers in Plano: this is a park where people in Dallas go to play tennis, or to play soccer on the tennis courts. I am not making this up.)
The album then goes into a few tunes that focus on what The O’s do best – harmonize and play some badass guitar and banjo. There’s more rock on this album, shown in “In Number We Survive” (track 3), and the lyrics are classic O’s – smart, funny and irreverent.
John Pedigo’s vocals really shine in “We Are Young”, a heartfelt, vulnerable song that’s perfect for a second album. From here, I think it’s a starting point for the album to get even better and even more, well, O’s. (By the way, if any guy were ever to show up at my door singing “Sunshine,” I think I might cry. I’m just sayin’.)
My favorite track of the album is “Everything’s Alright” – the fast pace, optimistic tune and lyrics and sharp vocals remind me of everything I love about this duo.
If there’s anything bad about this album, it’s that it is missing that… something. That something that made me want to go to shows just to hear them play “California“. It’s like somewhere along the way, The O’s grew up, and lost part of that rawness that made them so damn good. They’re still good, but I’m just withholding on that damn.
Best song: Everything’s Alright (track 11)
Note: We’ll be checking out The O’s CD release party at Club Dada this Friday. Lineup also includes Ryan Thomas Becker, The Orbans, Binary Sunrise and Scott Riegel.