The Crumbling Earth by River's Divide is a very short album, almost not much of an album at all with only five tracks (there is a sixth track but it is less than a minute long so really there are merely five full-length songs). The album was a product of a rough time in the band's history and at some points reflects the disconnect between band members.
The album opens with “Boardwalk Sawyer” that rambles through the tale of the singer taking a jog. There wasn't much more to the story than that, and I didn't really see how this song added much to the image of the band or the project. River's Edge describes their sound to be alternative rock and folksy and that’s a solid description of what’s going on. At one point it seemed like the jogger was running away from something but maybe the point was joggers only run in circles?
Next up was “Denim on Denim” which continued the unique juxtaposition. The lyrics for this song seemed cutesy and perhaps a bit of pop. That being said you can hear tinges of 80's hair metal on the chorus.
The third track “Arson” was a highlight of the group with the lyrics telling more of a story with a cool combination of classic rock and folk type message. The imagery was something different and this song felt more natural than the first two on the album. I liked the visual you get from the burning bridges of the past and redemption if that is in fact possible.
“Arson” gives way to “Sidewalking Man” which picks up the story after we consider the outcome of burnt bridges. This song also has the folk feel with a nice mix of the alternative rock and some of the classics as well. The story from this track seems like something perhaps a millennial could identify with, that moment when adulthood really isn't all you thought it would be. The story the lyrics lead the listener through could easily be told in this as a stand alone single as well.
The big finale of the album it the titled track “The Crumbling Earth” where the listener follows the band down the rabbit hole to witness what I assume is an analogy for the end of the band in the form of mutants taking over the earth. The lyrics are interesting but at the same time confusing as I tried to figure out just how we got to this point in the story. It seemed to be the worst case scenario as an ending to this short story, perhaps just a little too dramatic to be believable.
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