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My lat­est obses­sion is hear­ing and fol­low­ing the renais­sance of 1970s-styled rock poets and musi­cal­ly inno­v­a­tive bands win­ning the hearts and minds of music tick­et buy­ers every­where. Among the classi­est of these bands is The Gaslight Anthem, and Bri­an Fal­lon is their poet lau­re­ate.

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…

The_Gaslight_Anthem

The Gaslight Anthem

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…

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