Lost Leaders: Promises Promises
Promises Promises is the third fulllength album from Lost Leaders, an upstate New York-based band co-led by guitarist/vocalist Peter Cole and bassist/vocalist Byron Isaacs (who’s worked with Levon and Amy Helm, Olabelle and The Lumineers). The album’s sound has been described as “a bit Tom Petty, a bit Raconteurs, with a hint of Americana thrown in,” and although the Petty comparison is most apt, Lost Leaders are only similar to the early, more pop-oriented Petty, and not all that much, really. Produced in a Hudson Valley studio by David Baron, who also contributes keyboards to the recording, Promises Promises ’ nine songs are often deceptively cheery in nature, if not content, a bit on the oblique side, somewhat contemplative and wholly catchy. You can’t hear a track like “Probably Why We’re Here” or “Extra-Ordinary” without it latching onto your brain and finding its way back there when you least expect it. Using simple electronics along with standard rock instrumentation, Isaacs and Cole, supported by keyboardist/mandolinist Will Bryant and drummer Lee Falco, are proudly pop but their jazz backgrounds poke through when they break away and just have a little fun with it. Is it a retro throwback? Sorta-kinda, but not entirely, unless you consider solid melodic rock and heartfelt, straightforward songwriting a thing of the past. Mostly, it’s the kind of record you’ll want to return to more often than you’d imagine the first time you hear it—songs that make you think and sing along to.