Our Lady Peace
Burn Burn


4.0
excellent

Review

by Mike Stagno EMERITUS
July 21st, 2009 | 33 replies


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Burn Burn isn't Naveed II, but it is their most consistent work since Spiritual Machines.

Let's get a couple things straight right away. Burn Burn does not sound like Naveed. Nor was Burn Burn ever intended to sound like Naveed. When Raine Maida announced Our Lady Peace's seventh album last fall, he called it the "closest record to Naveed." Of course, after the vague comparison to the band's debut, people stopped paying attention and missed the explanation. When Raine compared the album to Naveed, he was referring to the way the album was made rather than the way the music sounded. Not unlike Naveed or even Maida's solo record, The Hunters Lullaby, Burn Burn was written, recorded, and produced without any outside intrusions.

In many respects, the tense conditions of the Healthy in Paranoid Times sessions took away from the final product. It isn't any secret that the band almost broke up during the two years it took to make the album, and as good of a record as it was, it was a clear step down from the material the band used to pen. Some of the songs, most notably "Don't Stop" and "Boy" sounded horribly average and forced. In contrast, the making of Burn Burn went a whole lot more smoothly, and it shows. For Burn Burn is not only a tighter, more natural sounding release than its predecessor, but it's a stronger record in virtually every regard.

While Our Lady Peace has adjusted their sound a little with each album, Burn Burn represents some of the mellowest material the band has written in their career. Songs like "Monkey Brains" and "Dreamland", and the bridge of "Never Get Over You" evoke vintage Our Lady Peace, but for the most part Burn Burn represents a change in direction. The aforementioned "Monkey Brains" is the only track in which guitarist Steve Mazur relies heavily on gritty distortion, and even then the song features a beautiful acoustic break not unlike Clumsy's "Superman's Dead". That isn't to say that Burn Burn is lacking in rock songs; the upbeat "White Flags" is another infectious guitar lead track that lacks the aggression of "Monkey Brains" but makes up for it through sheer enthusiasm, while "All You Did Was Save My Life" is a soaring piece that combines Our Lady Peace's anthemic sound with the introspective lyrical work similar to The Hunters Lullaby.

That said, Burn Burn particularly focuses on slower tracks, a role in which the band especially shines. Our Lady Peace explores a variety of different themes and styles; "Refuge" is a delicate, sparse piece carried by Maida's sympathetic lyrical delivery and one of drummer Jeremy Taggart's finest performances, whereas "Paper Moon" is a more open sounding track which sees Maida incorporating a light falsetto that hasn't been heard in Our Lady Peace's music since Spiritual Machines. "Signs of Life" strips down Our Lady Peace's sound even more than "Refuge", embracing acoustic dynamics previously foreign to their sound. From the piano melodies that snake through "Never Get Over You" – directly at first and later subtly – to the lengthy guitar solo in "Paper Moon", Our Lady Peace integrates an assortment of different ideas that make Burn Burn as diverse as any of their works thus far.

In Burn Burn, Our Lady Peace haven't released the album so many people wanted to hear – that being Naveed II –, but they have released their most consistent work since Spiritual Machines. The record doesn't particularly sound like anything Our Lady Peace has done in the past, but maybe that is what's so exciting about the quartet's seventh release. Each of Burn Burn's ten tracks has something to offer, be it the subdued excellence of "Signs of Life", the lively aggression of "Monkey Brains" or even the simple optimism of "Dreamland". Really, that's all I really wanted from Burn Burn. And unsurprisingly, Our Lady Peace delivers.



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user ratings (79)
Chart.
3.1
good
other reviews of this album
Mike Allen (3.5)
"Burn Burn" is an accessible and entertaining listen, with a few spectacular tracks....


Comments:Add a Comment 
Mikesn
Emeritus
July 21st 2009


3709 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

for Dave and Jom since nobody else cares
Dave and Jom go buy this today

Jom
Staff Reviewer
July 21st 2009


2712 Comments


Love this record, even though it's not as good as I'd hoped after "All You Did Was Save My Life."

Gyromania
July 21st 2009


16089 Comments


Really, Jom? That song kind of sucked, IMO.

"for Dave and Jom since nobody else cares
Dave and Jom go buy this today"

-I personally love Our Lady Peace, but nothing quite tops spiritual machines for me.

Mikesn
Emeritus
July 21st 2009


3709 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I really liked "All You Did...", but Signs of Life", "Monkey Brains", "Never Get Over You", and "White Flags" top it, I feel. Probably because I've been listening to it non-stop since May, but what ever.

Also apparently Raine Maida has a new solo album ready to go.

-I personally love Our Lady Peace, but nothing quite tops spiritual machines for me.
Cheers. Compared to the albums, I wasn't really big on Spiritual Machines the first few times I heard it, but it's grown on me a lot over the past year.

Gyromania
July 21st 2009


16089 Comments


It's a harder album to get into. In Repair remains my favourite OLP song to date. I'm looking for this now on Mediafire. Good review and what not, also.

fromtheinside
July 21st 2009


19178 Comments


yay i can't wait to hear this. tonight probably.


Digging: Techno Animal - The Brotherhood of the Bomb

jingledeath
July 21st 2009


7104 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Cool, I was waiting for this. Gonna get now : )

Aids
Contributing Reviewer
July 21st 2009


24098 Comments


I had no idea they had a new release coming out. I will get this.

Digging: Mitski - bury me at makeout creek

Gyromania
July 21st 2009


16089 Comments


Your user name is.... awesome.

PuddlesPuddles
July 21st 2009


4787 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I am pleasantly surprised
Going to pick this up later today, good review

mvdu
July 21st 2009


612 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Not as good as Spiritual Machines in my opinion, but it's commercial in a smart way - in a way Daughtry and David Cook are not IMO. I disagree with the All Music Guide review.

MilesR
July 21st 2009


97 Comments


Saw them Live at the Ottawa blues best. I haven't picked up the new album but from what I heard live it sounded pretty good.

ryan42138
July 21st 2009


65 Comments


i didn't even know they had a new album coming out

HenchmanOfSanta
July 21st 2009


1926 Comments


I really don't get the hype for this band. They are completely average in every way, especially on All You Did Was Save My Life.

fireaboveicebelow
July 21st 2009


6837 Comments


that song did kinda blow, I hope the rest is better

Yazz_Flute
July 21st 2009


18875 Comments


I like the album cover.

Digging: DIR EN GREY - Arche

YouAreMySilence
July 22nd 2009


3727 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

I really enjoyed the single and these guys never put out a bad record.
I will check it out.

foreverendeared
July 22nd 2009


14678 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

i like it. i hate the sound of the drums though, just the way they're mixed irks me.

PuddlesPuddles
July 22nd 2009


4787 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is pretty great

Mikesn
Emeritus
July 22nd 2009


3709 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Not as good as Spiritual Machines in my opinion, but it's commercial in a smart way
They've always been commercial friendly, doesn't change here. It's not as over produced as the last two though



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