Welcome to Winners


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Welcome to Winners Review

by MacKenzie Wilson

Lowgold's 2001 debut album, Just Backward of Square, sold 40,000 copies and went Top 40 in their homeland alone. Just a year prior to that, Lowgold was opening for Coldplay on their U.K. tour. The English press, in typical fashion, proclaimed the band to be "the next Coldplay," but living up to such expectations was unruly for Lowgold. Going broke and watching their label disintegrate before they could record a second album was a lot to deal with; however, Lowgold maintained momentum. Welcome to Winners is proof that there's light on the other side, and it's a decent comeback for the band. With a new label and a new drummer, Lowgold are in tip-top shape. Their post-alternative rock formula is solid; Darren Ford and Dan Symons' layered guitar work is exactly in place, as is Miles Willey's soft bass drops. They get the ballads right with their waves of acoustic guitars and quaint sample loops on "Quiet Times," "Let Me into Yours," and "Keep Your Gun Dry." Heavier moments such as "We Don't Have Much Time" and "The Same Way" are reflective of Lowgold's newfound confidence, while the jangly clink-clank of "Just a Ride" showcases their playful side. Lowgold have had fun with Welcome to Winners. It's not a remarkable rock album in the vein of Coldplay simply because Lowgold sound nothing like them. Lowgold's radio-friendly modern rock is more comparable to Feeder and Haven. For every concept album out there, there has to be a decent rock record with no frills. Welcome to Winners is one of those albums.

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