Attila and the Huns
Black Coal/Golden Bridges
Original Man Records
Attila and the Huns, a contemporary “Ska” band, have produced a true gem in Black Coal/Golden Bridges. Originally from Pittsburgh, the brothers migrated with their family to the Orlando area of Florida several years ago and have since put together a band with remarkable music from songs such as “You Rock My World” and “Fremont Street” in their early days to this most current collaboration of the brothers Andrew, Matthew, and Philip O'Donnell, in Black Coal/Golden Bridges.
This musical volume is quite impressive. The vocals are crisp and clear, backed by a driving Ska beat. Andrew and Matthew O'Donnell, songwriters and vocalists, truly emerge in this CD as a popular voices rivaling some of the most well known names in rock in the postmodern period. In Wikipedia we gain a flavour of the kind of music genre Andrew, Matthew, & Philip O'Donnell are grounded in:
"Ska (pronounced /ˈskɑː/, Jamaican [skja]) is a music genre that originated in Jamaica in the late 1950s, and was the precursor to rocksteady and reggae. Ska combined elements of Caribbean mento and calypso with American jazz and rhythm and blues. It is characterized by a walking bass line accented with rhythms on the upbeat. In the early 1960s, ska was the dominant music genre of Jamaica and was popular with British Mods. Later it became popular with many skinheads. Music historians typically divide the history of ska into three periods: the original Jamaican scene of the 1960s (First Wave), the English 2 Tone ska revival of the late 1970s (Second Wave) and the third wave ska movement, which started in the 1980s (Third Wave) and rose to popularity in the US in the 1990s." (See Wikepedia: Ska)
Do Attila and the Huns live up to the Ska genre? After listening to Black Coal/Golden Bridges one comes away with the feeling that they not just exist within a musical genre, but, in fact, ride the cutting edge of the field, lending to the evolution and development of this tradition. There is a rushing sense of musical “cleanness” in the songs from the mystically ballad-oriented “Now Exiting Satellite Beach,” and “Sober Enough To Talk,” to the driving rhythm of “Hi-point Lo-point,” and Attila and the Huns do not disappoint. They have playful fun in the opening of “Relapse” which is refreshing—folks who can kick back and not only be serious about their music but who can laugh with it as well.
“Snowfall” is perhaps the most beautiful ballad I have heard in a long time, rivaling some of Harry Chapin's work, particularly his “She is Always Seventeen.” This beauty, is expressed in yet another ballad, “Things Fall Apart, the Center Cannot Hold,” revealing again the songwriting talent of Andrew and Matthew.
The CD, Attila and the Huns', Black Coal/Gold Bridges, is put out by Original Man Records and reflects the Band's Pittsburgh roots—sporting one of those Golden Bridges on the front cover and a view of the skyline of downtown Pittsburgh on the back. Of course, the title of the volume Black Coal/Golden Bridges also reflects the culture of “The Burgh.” This CD is definitely worth purchasing, filled with innovative songwriting, rhythms as fresh as a clear creek, and a musical orientation that opens new doors for music in the postmodern period. Congratulations Attila and the Huns! We welcome your pronounced talent! Live long and Prosper!
NOTE TO READERS: To Listen to the music of Attila and the Huns or purchase Black Coal/Golden Bridges visit their site at: