Strangled Darlings latest LP is a fairly impressive record taken song by song but as a whole it never quite finds itself.
Right from the get-go, Red Yellow & Blue makes its purpose clear. Once it's on, you know what you're in for. It's yet another LP that mines heavily from old-time string music but tries to infuse a more punk sensibility into their craft. For the most part, they succeed. What Strangled Darlings haven't quite reached yet is a true niche. The Avett Brothers and Old Crow Medicine Show both found theirs early on and stood out as their own unique selves. Strangled Darlings do try to play up a Tom Waits edge from time to time but it doesn't connect as well as when they drop that angle and just play it straight. When the band does play it straight, they're at the strongest and frequently seem like they're on the verge of discovering their heart. Red Yellow & Blue will probably, in time, prove to be a pretty good transitional record.