Troubled Days may go for the same moves that most piano rock defaults to, but it does so with emotional gusto.
"Love Will Be Enough", the opening track of Seabird's third studio outing Troubled Days, says everything there is to know about the band up to this point. Aaron Morgan pounds hard on the piano, making the booming chords as dramatic as they can be. Brother and guitarist Ryan joins Aaron on the anthemic chorus: "Will this love be enough for us?" Fans of any prime-time drama know this formula well, as it seems for every sentimental closing montage there are a corresponding 20 songs of this type to really send all that emotionality home. (To wit, Seabird has had its music featured on Grey's Anatomy.) Seabird plays this formula with a near scientific precision, copping the expansive chorus stylings of Chris Martin ("Pull You In") and Marcus Mumford ("Love Suicide"), and -- because this is piano rock, after all -- the Broadway bounce of Billy Joel (the title track). Innovation isn't the name of the game here, but it doesn't need to be; these guys are all about selling a simple sonic well, which they do in spades.
Production-wise, It helps that Seabird is a beneficiary of the Kickstarter craze; Troubled Days was largely funded through a donation campaign that netted an impressive $40,000. The crisp and often punchy quality of the instruments make it plain that the band used every fan-donated cent. Troubled Days is both a labor of love and a growing indication that Seabird isn't far off from the big leagues.