Be My Hero + 4 Live Acoustic

October Project

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Be My Hero + 4 Live Acoustic Review

by Darryl Cater

The four "live" acoustic tracks on this EP were recorded in a studio, but they simulate a concert experience once reserved for the band's closest friends: the living room performance (before they were signed by Epic records, October Project frequently did shows in their friends' apartments). The songs are stripped down to one acoustic guitar, a couple of bongos, an acoustic piano, and the powerful harmonies of Mary Fahl and Marina Belica. It's easy to understand why October Project's albums have been heavily produced, with lots of strings and keyboards (the big, yearning melodies seem to call out for larger-than-life arrangements), but restraint does great things for these songs. The mellow arrangements combat the band's tendency toward melodrama, and focus attention on the most resonant elements in their sound (the remarkable melodies, the harmonies, the subtle, primal rhythms, and the considerable talent of the musicians). Ironically, the one fully produced track on the EP (the single "Be My Hero") is one of their biggest, rockiest, least restrained numbers.

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