Elf Power

Elf Power

The Winter Is Coming

Sugar Free

Whatever happened to rock and roll? You know, the stuff that springs forth from youthful enthusiasm and readily available instruments? Elf Power seems to have found some, though I’m not sure they’re willing to carry the extra baggage associated with the term. Sometimes the band traces more than draws from its influences: “Embrace the Crimson Tide” clearly references Jimi Hendrix’s “Third Stone from the Sun,” but wraps it up in a heavy drone all its own, and “Wings of Light” recalls Camper Van Beethoven at its dirgiest.

Still, this not-so-subtle plagiarism (or is it parallel evolution?) results in great songs, majestic compositions that live up to the promise of Rock And Roll With Capital Letters. Not as happily accessible as previous Elf Power efforts, The Winter Is Coming is nonetheless quite an Elf Power album, mixing influences, styles and instrumentation with reckless abandon.

Sugar Free Records, P.O. Box 14166, Chicago, IL 60614; http://www.sugarfreerecords.com

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