The Chris Robinson Brotherhood
The Magic Door


4.0
excellent

Review

by Hernan M. Campbell STAFF
September 12th, 2012 | 15 replies


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Vintage Blues rock with some slight cosmic twists.

Chris Robinson's infatuation with classic rock has always played a major role in his songwriting. A musician whose creativity was birthed by the soulful tone of old fashioned southern blues, and the enthralling sounds of legendary rock bands like Led Zeppelin, Cream, and his Georgian ancestors, The Allman Brothers Band. These musical influences were always more than evident both in his solo efforts and with his primary group, The Black Crowes, so it's practically inevitable for us to assume that his latest artistic endeavor, The Chris Robinson Brotherhood, would follow along a similar path.

The group's first album, Big Moon Ritual, radiated a sound that was all too familiar. It's music ventured in typical Blues rock compositions, but it also incorporated some exploratory flourishes of cosmic psychedelia that added a sense of mysticism to the listening experience. It was a beautifully orchestrated album, and the mergence of these two contrasting musical styles within the songs made them all the more alluring. The Magic Door is a continuation of a similar nature, and doesn't necessarily pioneer into any new territory, but it's just as entertaining as its predecessor. "Let's Go, Let's Go, Let's Go" opens the album, and the music immediately begins to float along a very bluesy groove. Every aspect of the music works thematically to create a very upbeat melody that makes the song so irresistibly infectious. The guitar work on the album, and particularly in "Let's Go, Let's Go, Let's Go", is very reminiscent to that of Cream. From the Slowhand-esque guitar solos to its indulgence in Wah-wah effects, Neal Casal conspicuously channels Eric Clapton to execute some truly captivating notes. "Someday Past The Sunset", on the other hand, expresses a much more melancholic mood. The repetitive rhythmic drive being exuded from the guitars and Chris Robinson's downtrodden vocal harmonies, coalesce so exquisitely to recreate the very essence that makes the blues so emotionally inviting.

"Vibration & Light Suite" and "Sorrows of a Blue Eyed Liar" exhibit the more exploratory approach of the album, as they are both long voyages into a more elaborate display of musicianship. "Vibration & Light Suite" is perhaps the main highlight in this collection of songs. The guitar and keyboard performances are the most impressive aspect of the song, which in the beginning flow on a sensuous melody to induce a mellow and pleasing sound for the senses. But as the song progresses and descends into a more psychedelic environment, both instruments coincide as they indulge in atmospheric and ambient effects to provide a cosmic passage for the listener to wander into. "Sorrows of a Blue Eyed Liar" is a bit more dreary, and has us drifting along a nebulous cloud of trancing sounds. And like "Vibration & Light Suite", the intimacy between the guitar and synthesizers are the primary catalyst that help drench the music in aquatic echoes. Overall, The Magic Door proves to be a very rewarding experience. It may not offer anything that we haven't already heard before from Chris Robinson, but it is at least a host to some truly mesmerize tunes. And in reality, that is a musician's one and only task, to simply entertain.



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user ratings (3)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
September 12th 2012


4453 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Hope you guys like the review and album. It's got a very "Cream meets The Grateful Dead" tone to it.

This review was also posted in the following websites:
http://www.thealtreview.net/2012/09/12/the-chris-robinson-brotherhood-the-magic-door/
http://mediasnobs.com/music-review/the-chris-robinson-brotherhood-the-magic-door/

taylormemer
September 12th 2012


4944 Comments


Cool.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
September 12th 2012


21448 Comments


Heard some of Big Moon Ritual and wasn't overly impressed. I'll check this one out though.

Good job on the review as always, pos'd.

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
September 12th 2012


4453 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks guys

@Jamie
If you didnt like Big Moon Ritual then you probably wont be too impressed with this one either, but Id say check it out. You never know.

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
September 12th 2012


21448 Comments


To be honest I didn't give it much of a chance, I just listened to a couple of the tracks, so I might give that one another try too at some point.

Also, I'm quite surprised to see that the group has released another album so soon after their debut.

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
September 12th 2012


4453 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, I am surprised as well. But it turned out pretty good in my opinion. Happy listening, mate.

YoYoMancuso
September 12th 2012


11189 Comments


i'm still trying to figure out how you say so much in such a little amount of words.
fantastic review, POS'd. I love me some blues so i gotta get this

insomniac15
Staff Reviewer
September 12th 2012


3483 Comments


This is a cool album. I have never listened much to The Black Crowes so I have to give them a try. Pos.

Digging: Brant Bjork - Black Flower Power

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
September 12th 2012


6286 Comments


Read the summary and was completely sold.

Bookmarked.

Digging: Madred - Supersonic Brainfuck Overdrive

menawati
Contributing Reviewer
September 12th 2012


16113 Comments


Nice review, will listen, pos'd

Digging: H.P. Lovecraft - H.P. Lovecraft II

Captain666
September 12th 2012


652 Comments


oh shii didn't even see this

Captain666
September 12th 2012


652 Comments


pos'd



BallsToTheWall
September 12th 2012


44805 Comments


Been getting into this guys stuff lately. His interview admitting the spitting incident was rich.

Digging: Pink Turns Blue - If Two Worlds Kiss

JamieTwort
Contributing Reviewer
September 14th 2012


21448 Comments


This is really good. I'm loving the Grateful Dead-esque psychedelic influence mixed with the bluesy sound of The Black Crowes' early stuff.

CloudsOfDust
October 20th 2012


4 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Just picked this up. Very solid album. The review sold me.



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