Alpha Rev, "New Morning"

65 Billboard Rating

Alpha Rev serves up a generous side of heart and soul with its rock'n'roll on "New Morning." The title track from the Texas band's major-label debut channels tender feelings over lush guitars, strings and pitter-patter drums. Backed by a lone acoustic riff, frontman Casey McPherson denounces the material things in life ("I don't give a damn about the castle on the hill/All the gold that we could eat/Or the horse you had for sale") before the chorus climbs. "Have you heard, my Mona Lisa?/Have you heard who you are?/You're a new morning," McPherson emotes over an expansive arrangement. As sincere as his vocals come across, though, "New Morning" never quite reaches its potential depth. It sweeps and soars, but a little more groundedness might have done it some good.-Lindsey Fortier

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