Album Review: Big Outside, by The Seed

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seedbigoutsideProps to The Seed for releasing the nastiest (in a good way), funkiest, most groove-laden album of 2009 to date. Seriously. Big Outside absolutely jams, and we don’t say that glibly.

The band has had a full year to perfect its product while it saved up the money for cd pressing, and it appears to be time well spent. Drummer Rico Samuel is on fire behind his drum kit, laying one thick groove morsel after another while bassist Thom Gibson keeps pace. For his part, singer and guitarist Lance Sitton ably mixes the stutter-strumming of reggae with that of a campfire torch song while gently laying down vocals with subtle but palpable soul. While songs such as longtime Seed standard “Friday” reflect the group’s peaceful nature and desire to have fun, it’s songs such as the gorgeous and compelling “She Chose” that prove the band can move much more than your hips. “Middle Ground” showcases a sweeter, more personal side of the band’s emotional pull, as well. There’s enough head-slamming (nodding is far too kind) groove here to satisfy even the less cuddly types, though, no matter how touching the lyrics may try to be.

Harnessing all that funk takes a full, rich recording, and Engaged Audio certainly provided that. The studio captures the band at full force, making every song sound as expansive as the album title suggests. In all, Big Outside hits the ear like the soundtrack to a float trip and riverside cookout: relaxing, vibrant and utterly burdenless. It’s an album-long love song to a life less stressful. Chill out, love life and let it take you where it may… and listen to this record while you do it.

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