The McCloskey Brothers Band

Sunny On Top, 2005

REVIEW BY: Elizabeth Crowder


I am a big fan of country music, but the thought of reviewing a group called The McCloskey Brothers Band made me cringe. Naturally, I had visions of dueling banjos with tracks of trailers being taken by tornados. Not to mention the hound dogs... anyway, I digress.

This rock/country group is made of the Brothers McCloskey (Todd and David) on lead vocals and most of the instruments, with help from Jared Milos and Alex Feldman on bass and percussion, respectively. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Much of this band's music reminds me of the classic musical pieces of Americana starring Don McLean, John Mellencamp, Simon and Garfunkel and (naturally) Lynyrd Skynyrd. The only catch is that these groups are major influences in music, leaving anything that someone else comes up with as seeming like an imitation of the Real Thing, which this disc is.

Naroush is an attempt to get some mainstream acceptance for the brothers' off-the-beaten-path ways, yet much of the music brought to the table falls flat in the attempt to become something more important than it actually is.

For example, the songs "Smile," "Unraveled" and "Southern" are both disappointing, sounding like someone doing karaoke at a dive bar or singing at a high school prom. "Happiness" and "Harmony" seem like the kind of music that one would hear in any country bar on open mic night. Granted, TMBB has great lyrics and some good vocals on some songs, but those moments are few and far between on Naroush.

Normally, it takes a lot for songs to really rub me the wrong way, but "Perrier And Prozac" and "Paper Cuts" both try too hard to be important rock ballads. Pretentious music annoys me, especially coming from a group as obtuse as this one. Beyond that, "Falling" sounds like any alt-country rock song one would hear on contemporary country stations, where the artist has yet to sell out to The Man, while "Deliver" sounds a little like an amateur Dylan impersonator.

I hate to give a less than stellar review on a group that is obviously trying to break out into the music scene, but it seems to me TMBB would go further if they were true to themselves and stuck to the bluegrass roots they came from and stopped trying so hard to become the Next Big Thing.

Rating: D+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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