In 2008, The Gaslight Anthem released The '59 Sound LP, their second album which alerted music fans and critics alike that something new was pulling into town...Their first effort, Sink Or Swim, was a crackling hint of what was to come, but the album sound was rougher with jarring guitars, irregular beats more reminiscent to metal which roared over the poet's lines than a group hell bent on cranking out some new code, but critics nodded in agreement that this band had something special, something worth noticing.
New Jersey rock fans knew there was something there as the TGA fan base grew, something that would remain there, even as they sharpened and clarified their delivery system. When the more polished breakthrough second album came along, huge segments of both the old school classic rock and post-punk rocker nation were easily hooked. The Gaslight Anthem rose to stardom quickly. With The '59 Sound many said a new Springsteen had been announced. Eventually it became rumored that the Boss himself was an avid fan, as he was spotted in the audience of increasingly growing crowds. Yes. Most of the lads even hailed from the same backyard palace of New Jersey, New Brunswick, a mere half hour from beachside Asbury Park. Soon they would share the same stage. Also in 2008, the band covered "God's Gonna Cut You Down" for the Johnny Cash tribute album All Aboard! A Tribute to Johnny Cash. Brian Fallon has stated several times that without The Replacements there would be no Gaslight Anthem, as they are heavily influenced by them, especially their song "Left of the Dial".
Paul Westerberg, of The Replacements once wrote a song, an acoustic ballad. When he played it to the rest of the band, it was met with silence. "Save that for your solo album, Paul," Bob Stinson said. "That ain't the Replacements". The track remained unreleased for years. Westerberg realized his toughest audience was the band itself, later saying, "If it doesn't rock enough, Bob will scoff at it, and if it isn't catchy enough, Chris won't like it, and if it isn't modern enough, Tommy won't like it."
There's no doubt that Brian Fallon and his group is assembled with those same sentiments in mind.
To be continued...