Delta Rae’s debut album Carry The Fire will forever be a very special album to me. It is one of those releases where everything works perfectly. Now I am a firm believer that sometimes it has to be the right person on the other end of the earphones at the right time for an album to root itself so deeply into someone that it actually achieves that status, but however something like that happens, it did happen to me. Carry The Fire will always be one of my favorite albums ever.
Obviously After It All – no matter how good it could be – would have a hard time living up to my love for Carry The Fire and so before I even listened, it already had that disadvantage. As expected, After It All didn’t hit me as hard as its predecessor, but I was still very pleasantly surprised by the sophomore effort from the Durham, NC natives.
It’s quite clear from the start of the album that the sound Delta Rae was hoping to achieve with After It All is a little louder and a little more rock than Carry The Fire. Although I am not 100% certain of their faith, I also found that the album – for the most part – strayed away from the somewhat spiritual themes that Carry The Fire included. Those themes still linger somewhat, but in relative terms, After It All definitely feels different in that regard.
Also the inclusion of one explicit track “You’re the One For Me” where I believe the word “fuck” is sung once or twice distances the band a bit from becoming mainstream country. That said, the aforementioned expletive is expressed in a more cautious way and in no way comes across as vulgar, yet it also doesn’t seem misplaced as the band always seems to stay genuine no matter what they do.
For me one of the standout tracks is “Chasing Twisters” which could be heard (albeit with a slightly different arrangement) on their EP of the same name. “Cold Day in Heaven” and “Bethlehem Steel” are both up there for me as well.
Like I said, I don’t think anything will come close to the love I have for Carry The Fire, but After It All is nowhere near a sophomore slump. I thoroughly enjoyed this album.
Editor in Chief of Lemonade Magazine
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