It might be best to start this CD at the third cut, Faster, with its ripping psych guitar lead and jumpy tempo, 'cause Rob Viccari knows his way around a skyblown set of riffs, and the tone of the entire song is very much a matter of taking rock enough out of its chart tendencies to reinvigorate the alt sense of the 80s. Tara Eberle is the bassist and singer, a woman who falls well outside Bangles blandness, possessing a range that helps propel each track, counterpointing Viccari's lead work. Her husband Rick wields the rhythm guitar, grabs a few upfront larynx duites, and joins Tara on backing vocals. Iridesense is largely anthemic but of the variety that made Journey, Queen, Heart, later Le Roux, Red Rider, and the best chartrockers so enjoyable, laying down uplifting progressions well entablatured. In fact, trash Whitesnake, Night Ranger, and the other hair-farming drekmongers and put this quartet in their place. The music's a lot more honest, closer to the ground, and catchier—no faked passions, no tortured rock star affectations, no slide rule calculations slipping into ready-baked formulas.
There's a decent element of blues and lament orientation but not of elder days, more of 70s-80s inventiveness, looking to folk and latter-day crooning for inspiration. Forever shows this nicely. Trip Called Life is a great set of tunes for road trips, though Viccari's work makes it equally attractive for sit-down sessons, reminding me of an American version of Paul Kossoff blended with Mick Ralphs and maybe Tim Renwick. All in all, good solid rock to make you smile in the wind while tooling down the highway with the top down, sun smiling benevolently, blue skies stretching out forever, and not a care in the world.
Edited by: David N. Pyles
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