Randy & The Bloody Lovelies
First Appeared in The Music Box, November 2005, Volume 12, #11
Written by T.J. Simon
Los Angeles’ Randy & The Bloody Lovelies is the musical vehicle of Randy Wooten, who crafts ’70s-style piano rock in the tradition of Billy Joel and Paul Williams. Wooten is unquestionably a very good pianist with a voice well-suited for his original compositions. Lift, the group’s second disc, begins with its strongest number, the ultra-catchy Red Carpets, which is followed by two other winning tracks: New Disguise and Why Ya ’Spose. Throughout the record, his backing band sounds terrific, particularly Lee Thornburg’s excellent trumpet solo on Twilight Kids. Nevertheless, things go downhill rather quickly when the ensemble attempts its down-tempo numbers, such as Wondrous Things and the meandering, but thankfully short, And I Do.
For the record, there is nothing that is particularly edgy or original about Randy & The Bloody Lovelies. One recalls the manner in which Ben Folds Five reinvented piano rock in the ’90s and made the sub-genre cool again, but that doesn’t appear to be on Wooten’s agenda. Therefore, the extent that people will enjoy Lift can be gauged by how satisfying they find Billy Joel’s output from the ’70s.
Cramming 14 tracks into 45 minutes, Lift feels a lot longer as Wooten’s vocal delivery begins to wear thin by the disc’s midpoint. In addition, many of the songs during the latter half of the album recall compositions from the 1976 children’s movie Bugsy Malone, which featured music composed by Williams, and the end result is that most of the effort just sounds tired and dated.
Lift is available from Barnes & Noble.
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2005 The Music Box