Darker My Love’s “Alive As You Are”

“Reactions to the album seem to be polarized, it’s being lauded as genius and censured as psychedelic pastiche.” -LW

Lindsey Whitefield

7.5
out of 10

Darker My Love
Alive As You Are
August 17, 2010
Dangerbird Records

Rather unexpectedly, Darker My Love fell down a folk-rock-psychedelica rabbit hole. Gone are the elements one might expect from a Darker My Love release and, curiouser and curiouser, in their stead what feels like a nostalgic, West Coast, late 1960s counterculture soundtrack. Alive As You Are seems to strongly invoke the sounds of fellow Los Angeleans, The Byrds, with further aesthetic influence contributed by post-Revolver Beatles as well as The Grateful Dead, though to be fair in a modern way. The album is solid California-grown rock and roll but is also an easy listen that should satisfy outside of the band’s core fan base.

I appreciate Darker My Love’s departure with Alive As You Are. Reactions to the album seem to be polarized, it’s being lauded as genius and censured as psychedelic pastiche. I say so what if they pulled purely superficially from their predecessors? Alive As You Are is listenable, coherent, and cohesive; by all accounts a risk turned success.

My favorite tracks include Split Minute, 18th Street, and Rain Party.