Music Reviews

The World & Everything In It, by The Oranges Band

The World & Everything In It cover

Ten years have come and melted away since the splash and drip of this album. Hearing it today?—not a dry spot the whole way through.

Just to view the cover puts a mind at ease. In tone, The World & Everything In It (2005) elicits a beachy Western SoCal vibe, even if it was made in Baltimore, MD—where The Oranges Band was born (in 2000) and still plays…occasionally.

With a strong, cool edge begins “Believe”—an excellent introduction to the band’s playing style (which is to say jaunty and loose, yet somehow crisp and precise all the same); not to mention Roman Kuebler’s exceptionally smooth voice; a voice that, if it could be seen, would look like the cover at sunset.

The album builds momentum quickly and one hears the group locked in, yet fluid in its playing. It all sounds so natural and nascent, even if it was spawned from a practiced discipline within a studio instead of under the white sun spreading hot honey sunshine on some beautiful beach.

That you’re listening to a recording instead of hosting the group in your room might be in need of conviction, the album sounding so full, so free and alive, rollicking through speakers with energetic tracks like “The Mountain,” “I’ll Never Be Alone,” and the surging “Ride the Nuclear Wave.”

No pink hands pushing audio dross here. On The World & Everything In It, The Oranges Band simply lay it out. And they do it loud! Sounds similar to how Link Wray & his Ray Men once did (note the ode to Wray’s classic, “Rumble,” in the intro to “The Mountain”): Like. It. Or. Not. Here. It. Is. —The World & Everything In It has that kind of nonchalant force about it. The song is craft, but played with a force channeling energy on high; amps up; arms loose; hands precise.

The sunny splash of Dan Black’s fuzzy guitar matched with the precision of drummer Dave Voyales’ knowing hands on “Ride the Wild Wave,” is stunning. Like the gifted Scott Asheton (of Iggy And The Stooges), one can hear in Voyales’ playing the ability to envelop the song rather than simply beat it to death.

“I figured we would ride the wild wave all around the world,” sings Kuebler with a voice reflecting on when being seventeen in the summertime meant tasting the brief and balmy freedom that is “all of the time in the world to be alone, all alone.” Following “Ride the Wild Wave” is “Open Air,” another lyrically reflective piece on peachy youth made all the more memorable for the listener by The Oranges Band’s ability to create and play meaningfully a strong and simple song about experience and growth—and that’s all over this one.

Since The World & Everything In It, The Oranges Band have released one album, the humorously (portentously?) titled, Are Invisible (2009), and have played but a handful of shows.

Perhaps the ten-year anniversary of this work coupled with enough social media nagging will inspire yet another creative venture. If not, and what’s left is truly all that’s left, it’s no bummer. The World & Everything In It is more than enough.

For the entire album on Grooveshark, CLICK HERE, or, have a go at “Believe” below.