Over a year ago The Organ Beats teased us with their double single release “Mish Mash.” The two tracks hit harder than anything on 2009’s Sleep When We Are Dead and signaled the Waltham, MA based band were ready to make the leap as the area’s next great rock band. Well, not much happened after that in the months after. A few gigs here and there, Noelle’s solo EP, but not much else from The OBs.
Until now. Goldenheart, the sophomore LP from The Organ Beats just dropped and the wait was well worth it. Over ten crushing tracks, the band flexes their power pop muscles like everyone in The Expendables combined. The songs are bigger and heavier and the production work sounds awesome. There’s no doubt that the band is refocused and ready to dominate.
The secret weapon on this album is the addition of lead guitarist Alex Fiorentino. He nails all of his solos (see: “Don’t You Ever Feel Like Dying?”) and really fills out the group’s sound on songs like “Living Without You” and “Don’t Wake Me Up.” Fiorentino also takes on some keyboard parts and allows Noelle to focus on rhythm guitar and vocals. The backbone of bassist Mikey Colocouris and drummer Danny LeBlanc have stepped up their game and provide the driving force behind tracks like “Song Long” and “Get Up!”
The only (very minor) criticism of the album is for Noelle. She has an amazing voice and we know what she is capable from past releases. For some reason she keeps the majority of her vocals in the lower part of her register for most verses. There’s nothing wrong with this–it works quite effectively on tracks like “Last Goodbye” and “Hold On.” But she rarely cuts loose and wails for someone with killer pipes. She often dials it up for the choruses, but that only makes me want to hear more all-out performances. Maybe it comes too easy and her angelic tone and control is mistaken for lethargy. I have been wrong before.
The success of Goldenheart, along with pretty much every other project Noelle has been involved with, is the contrast of the music and her voice. She’s not a powerhouse like Pat Benatar or pure sugar like Belinda Carlise. Her vast range and expert delivery sets her apart from any cliched comparisons.
With tight songwriting, slick riffs and hooky melodies, The Organ Beats have found the recipe for success.