Abel, a rock band from Poughkeepsie, NY has a bit of a complicated history. Briefly, they were signed to the indie rock imprint of Facedown Records, Dreamt. This was alongside bands like My Epic (also extremely underrated), Sleep For Sleepers, Theives and Liars, and Shapes Stars Make. They put out their acclaimed first ever LP Lesser Men (and second major release) on ComeandLive! records and this time around they take the DIY approach with their release Make It Right. What a release it is.
“I’ll Be Waiting” gets things rolling with the best of everything the band has to offer. So many influences emerge in this fast-paced track, and something new seems to pop up each time, whether it’s the post-hardcore-like vocals in the final chorus, or the ambient distorted guitar fading into static. “Fire Walk With Me” has a refrain that sounds like it could be a Southern Gospel hymn; “Oh! The Devil wants to drag my soul, drag my soul, down to the lake of fire!” This track is already spinning at the widely syndicated Effect Radio, and for good reason. If any song were radio ready, it would be this one (even though it’s still far from being a stereotypical radio rock track).
“An Ultimatum” is a warning of sorts that in the end becomes nice passionate opus of good old rock n’roll. Some catchy staccato guitar plucking with an overlaying riff crescendos into a solo just as passionate as the lyrics. “Come Back Home” is a song of longing, with some nicely placed static thrown in that at first I thought was a flaw in the recording, before realizing it was too perfectly timed. “Fine Lines” has a melody so catchy it made me want to hype the record as one of the best of the year, solely based on this song. That, and its placement right after a comparatively melancholy track makes the effect on the listener so much more effective.
“A Grief Observed” is, for the bibliophiles reading this, undoubtedly inspired by the C.S. Lewis work of the same name. Ambient, ethereal moods return in “Fifteen Years” and the remaining tracks are just as compelling as everything I’ve mentioned so far. I’d rather not spoil the surprises behind all the Easter eggs on this record. Just trust us. One last thing: you don’t have to be a Christian to enjoy this band, in case the prospect of spiritual lyrics turns you off to checking any band out. Who knows, maybe this record will become one of your favorites, and maybe the lyrics will sway you.