Eisley is the story of the little indie rock band that could. Fronted by sisters Sherri and Stacy DuPree, Eisley's unique and whimsical sound has earned them spots on tours with musical giants such as Coldplay, Snow Patrol, and The Fray. Now, the band is back and ready to make more waves with a fresh batch of songs on its sophomore album, Combinations.
The album starts out with the ominous, "Many Funerals," a song about mourning and death. The DuPree sisters' voices blend seamlessly, creating a moody atmosphere over haunting guitars. "Invasion," continues the mysterious journey of Combinatons by describing an alien assault. "Taking Control" seems to turn a corner completely and is almost cheerful. While not a weak song, it seems tailor-made for radio. "Go Away" utilizes the piano and is a perfect break-up song. On "I Could Be There For You," Eisley sings of hope and loyalty in friendship. "Come Clean" is about being honest, and features the sounds of children, while "Ten Cent Blues" dabbles in folk rock which Eisley pulls off nicely. The band's rock sound returns in a big way with "A Sight to Behold." "Combinations," a love song, slows things down and has an indie feel, and the final song on the album, "If You're Wondering," is highlighted with xylophones and soft vocals, creating a dream-like sound. The song is beautiful but a bit anticlimactic.
After listening to the enchanting vocals and fairy-tale-like instrumentation, it is easy to see why Eisley has attracted so much attention. True to its title, Combinations weaves a variety of sounds and themes to create a sophomore album that ups the ante from Room Noises. The only complaint is that the band tends to lean a little too heavily on "oos" and "ahhs." Also, "Taking Control" does not seem to fit with the rest of the album. Vocally, the DuPree sisters at times resemble Leigh Nash (of Sixpence None The Richer fame), but are still unique.
Those looking for overtly "spiritual" material will be disappointed. Eisley is not a band to fit in a box, and most of its songs are about life and love. However, one should not pass up Eisley just because the name "Jesus" is not mentioned. It is clear the band has hope, and its creativity clearly illustrates the work of a Creator.
Overall, Combinations is a strong project that will most likely please old and new fans alike. It will be interesting to see where it takes this modest band of siblings from Tyler, Texas next.- Review date: 8/18/07, written by Laura Nunnery of Jesusfreakhideout.com
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