Raine Maida
"The Hunter's Lullaby"

(Nettwerk Records 2007) Raine Maida - The Hunter\'s Lullaby

Canadian musician Raine Maida is never at a loss for words on his debut solo full-length release. With one listen to "The Hunter's Lullaby" you would think he had been saving up material for eons just for the chance to share his feelings publicly. Except that as the frontman for Our Lady Peace, Maida's been writing songs for at least the last decade and a half. Propelled with darkly intriguing songs and Maida's obvious fervor coupled with his hip hop influences, "The Hunter's Lullaby" is oddly effective.

Often throughout "The Hunter's Lullaby" Maida makes clear his aspirations of wanting nothing more than to be a rapper for a few moments. Luckily, Maida's smart enough not to try and settles instead for the dry Lou Reed style of spoken vocals delivered over bright, full bodied melodies. Paired with that delivery is Maida's style that seems to personally address individual listeners, such as on "The Snake And The Crown" and "Careful What You Wish For." But even with all the politics scattered throughout, quick bouncing tracks, like "Confessional," still offer a lighter side.

One piece of advice for Maida: your drum machine (most likely) has more than one setting. Fast or slow, it is still the same rhythm which permeates a number of tracks on "The Hunter's Lullaby" and the repetition dampens the album's overall effect. Likewise the politics and principles walk the fine line between too much and just enough. But "The Hunter's Lullaby" is enthusiastic while tight hooks keep things interesting. For music fans south of the Canadian border, Maida's "The Hunter's Lullaby" will likely be a welcome and refreshing reintroduction while others may see it as an unnecessary interruption for Our Lady Peace.

B+

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