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Raptor Trail, The: Devil On An Indian

Here is another nice surprise from 2016. The band is The Raptor Trail hailing from North Carolina and combine an interesting mixture of retro progressive and southern rock. Some have compared their southern stylings to The Allman Brothers Band but you could also add Lynyrd Skynyrd as well. The trio consists of Gene Bass (drums and percussion), Matt Mayes (vocals, guijo, acoustic guitars, banjo) and John Meyer (vocals, guitars, bass, keyboards, effects). In the spring of 2016 the band released their sophomore effort New World and just this past fall have returned with their third release Devil On An Indian.

This is a concept album about a young Indian boy coming to terms with his Native heritage after a severe motorcycle accident. Themes of 21st century America, Christianity, assimilation and morality all crop up. This is a well thought out story but for me it's all about the music and in a word it is excellent. A layer of organ and feedback laden guitar riffs begin the album opening track "Ten Bears". The music transitions between catchy acoustic rhythms and heavier riffs culminating with some nice lead work. "How The West Was Won" mixes acoustic and knife edged electric guitar infused with a hint of psychedelia. This is another track that had me hooked right from the start. Layers of heavy guitar riffs begin "Quaker Pets", another catchy tune. Mellow arpeggio guitar, sublime backing vocals and southern hard rock can all be heard. "Dream Catcher" is one of the stranger tracks featuring mostly drums, percussion and ethereal strums of banjo. Later on the guitar and keyboard effects are as trippy as the album gets.

One of the best songs has to be "Wolf Medicine" opening with crystal clear guitar sounding similar to vintage Mark Knopfler. The music builds gently taking its time until the ending guitar solo brings the song to a stunning conclusion.

The Devil On An Indian is another fine album in what has been a very strong year for music. If you like intelligent rock music with thoughtful lyrical themes, fine melodies and strong song craft you should really give this one a listen.

Track Listing:
Part One
1. Ten Bears
2. How The West Was Won
3. Quaker Pets
Part Two
4. Dream Catcher
5. Wolf Medicine
6. Doorstep
Part Three
7. Froth Squelch
8. Without A Trace
9. The Vanishing Point
10. Red Giant

Added: January 25th 2017
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 2894
Language: english

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