Venus Mission | Love Me Back Alive

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Rock: Progressive Rock Pop: Piano Moods: Mood: Brooding
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Love Me Back Alive

by Venus Mission

Engineered by former Afghan Whigs' John Curly, this sophisticated, sultry, powerful sorrow-to-redemption song collection is awash in guitar textures, driving rhythm arrangements, and luscious piano flavoring. Fans of Fiona, take note.
Genre: Rock: Progressive Rock
Release Date: 

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1. Better Not to Know
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3:40 $0.99
2. High Road
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3:23 $0.99
3. I Want You
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3:17 $0.99
4. Everybody in This Town
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4:00 $0.99
5. Love Me Back Alive
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4:19 $0.99
6. Too Bad
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3:12 $0.99
7. Girls of Virtue
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4:27 $0.99
8. Good Enough
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4:10 $0.99
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
This sophomore release from Venus Mission is getting great radio exposure in the tri-state area and garnering good reviews as well.

Mike Breen of Cincinnati's City Beat wrote the following review of "Love Me Back Alive" in the October 12th issue of Citybeat magazine:

For "Love Me Back Alive" Rosenthal enlisted two of the area's more celebrated knob-twidlers, John Curley (who engineered live full-band sessions) and Ric Hordinski (who co-produced with Rosenthal). The first collaboration between the studio magicians creates a fitting dichotomy: Just as Rosenthal's songs (which feature a couple of co-writers) blur the lines between the celestial and the organic, the production has a lively, driving underbelly splattered with an atmospheric magnetism. With often biting, empowering lyrics of redemption out of sorrow, Rosenthal and her co-conspirators paint sweeping, emotionally self-reflective tracks with a variety of textures and engaging, creative nuances, from echoing guitars and spacious, almost psychedelic effects to jarring guest spots from singer/poetess Abiyah and rapper Swift.

The recordists and quality sessioneers recruited to play on the album bring Rosenthal's songs to life, but without the ornamentation the tunes would still stand up fairly well (though they'd tend toward a much more "Adult Contemporary" corner of the room). Rosenthal's airy yet pointedly expressive voice is uniquely effervescent, but it's also one of those love it/hate it kind of vocal styles. Standouts on the album (the ones where everything clicks at once) include "Girls of Virtue," a rolling, minor-key dirge that's the best written cut on the disc, and "I Want You," which features snake-charmer guitar and a defiantly abrupt, popcorn-bass-buoyed chorus. Occasionally, the songwriting doesn't stand up to encasement, but for the most part Love definitely holds up as Rosenthal's finest recording so far. Go to venusmission.com for more details


Reviews


to write a review

GG

Venus Mission's Strong Second Effort Reflects Dynamic Vision
“Love Me Back Alive” is the ambitious second offering from Venus Mission, a hot five-piece outfit from Cincinnati. Fusing several genres together, such as synth-pop, singer/songwriter fare, with a rock edge to boot, Venus Mission succeeds in creating a textured, dynamic soundscape of hook-filled songs.


The project is the brainchild/vision of Andrea Rosenthal, who writes, sings lead, and plays keyboards thru out the disc. Her sexy, throaty vocals spiral and glide throughout the swirling mixes, not unlike Fiona Apple or Tori Amos’s vocal styles.


Rosenthal enlisted a cast of all-stars to help her produce this collection, including co-producer, Ric Hordinski of “Over the Rhine” fame, Richard Dodd, a Nashville ace who mastered it, and John Curley, an ex-“Afghan Whig”, who engineered it. Their efforts give the finished songs a contemporary sheen without glossing over their intimacy.

This disc’s sonic grooves often rely on layered tracks that sample hints of hip-hop with more traditional rock-based hooks. For good measure, Rosenthal’s fiery vocal phrasing rides herd on the more ethereal arrangements.


With so many new bands instantly pigeonholed into restrictive labels, whether it’s alt-country or MOR pop, it’s refreshing to find a band today who don’t limit themselves to a paint-by-numbers sound. From the strong, should-be-a-single, “Everybody in this Town”, to the angry lament of “Too Bad”, these songs complement each other, which makes the disc blend into a cohesive whole greater than the sum of its parts.


Building on the momentum of their first disc, “MidWestern Soul”, whose title goes far in describing their vision, Venus Mission displays growth here with a mature look at love and all its mutations. Lyrical imagery shades these songs in rich hues, ranging from the yearning tones of “High Road”, to the more caustic ones of “Girls of Virtue”. It’s a familiar journey to anyone who has ever loved deeply and lost, but who still yearns for a new connection. In other words, most of us can relate to this emotional palette.


For a mid-sized city with a sometimes-shaky rep, Cincinnati has boasted a thriving local music scene for years. Bands with national profiles like the Afghan Whigs, the Ass Ponys, Over the Rhine, the Bears, and the Greenhornes have all cut their teeth in this funky Ohio River town. With two fine releases under their belt, Venus Mission could now be on the cusp of breaking out. “Love Me Back Alive” will stir you up, and that’s never a bad thing.