Artist: La Rocca
Album: The Truth
Label: Dangerbird Records
Review By: Jacob Gehman
It can be a mistake to release an EP, then lift songs from the EP for your full length album. It often results in a fragmented listen that is disappointing for the fan who has hung out with the band through their EPs. Eisley comes immediately to mind, who’s full length is composed of at least 2//3rds of material they had released on EPs before. ActionReaction did something similar, only without the grace of re-recording anything. La Rocca’s prior release, the Sing Song Sung EP contains four pretty good songs, two of which made the full length album.
However, two songs out of eleven isn’t so bad, it’s only a small fraction of the whole album after all. They kick the album off with an EP number, “Sketches (20 Something Life)” which lays out the target age group of The Truth. The jangly pop rock that La Rocca has perfected will appeal mostly to young adults in their twenties.
The vocals (performed by Bjorn Baillie) are reminicent of Jeff Tweedy (Wilco) and would sound right at home on a rootsier rock band like Goldrush. They are undoubtely the highlight of what La Rocca does. Without the vocals (and the pretty good melodies they traverse) La Rocca would be little more than a wanna-be band. While his vocals on some music that was more adventurous would be amazing, The Truth is still an engaging listen.
If you think a pop rock band like the U2s, Coldplays, or The Frays of the world with Wilco-esque vocals would be up your ally, give La Rocca a spin. The songs they write are strong, especially when steered by Bjorn Baillie’s vocals. On the other hand, if you had hoped to never read a band comparrison to U2 or Coldplay again in your life, you won’t be missing out on a hidden treasure by saving your money.