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Sunday, November 22, 2009

Review: Sexstone - The Painful Side Of Truth

Sexstone - The Painful Side Of True
2009, Sexstone

Madisonville, Kentucky isn't the first place that might occur to you as home of a vibrant Indie rock band, but Sexstone hasn't come this far by being typical. Without a wealth of known clubs to play, Sexstone has created their own, renting out Elks Clubs, VFW lodges and whatever other space they can find while putting a lot of time performing for benefit concerts for various charities. Sexstone has quickly built a rabidly loyal following and is looking to expand their fan base outside of their home territory. Led by singer Steve Bauer, Sexstone has recorded and released their full-length debut album, The Painful Side Of The True.

Sexstone gets off to a great start with Thank You, a sardonic rocker about the end of a relationship. The theme here is universal and should speak to most, while the tune has a catchy beat and strong melody. Theme sounds like a soundtrack piece from a teen comedy, sung by the poor lost soul who never, ever gets the girl. Things trend progressively downhill from there, with Sexstone relying on repetition and emotional weight to drive the music. This combination tends to way it down instead. One highlight awaits those who dig deep into the album however. Wait For Me (Soldier's Song) is a lament and prayer about a life that will pass him by back home. Written from the perspective of a deploying soldier whose wife is pregnant, it’s an acknowledgement that he's going to miss out on a lot and a plea for it all to slow down and wait until he gets home. Wait For Me is an amazing tune. From the high to the low, Sexstone falls to You Know. The writer's depressed; the songs depressed; I was depressed before the song was over. Even when the big guitars kick in the energy just isn't there. Sexstone closes out with two average, easy to overlook tracks: Screaming Daylight and Lift. The former is flat and the latter simply fails to stand out in any remarkable fashion.

Sexstone possesses some real talent, but you have to work through a lot of average material on The Painful Side Of True to get to the gold music nuggets therein. Wait For Me (Soldier's Song) is special, and Thank You is decent, but the rest of the album is mired in mediocrity. Bauer's got an intriguing voice that wends its way through the songs presented here, and the musicianship is strong. Take some time to check out Sexstone. I don't know if they have it 100% together yet sound-wise, but they're definitely on the way to somewhere.

Rating: 2.5 Stars (Out of 5)

You can learn more about Sexstone at or You can purchase The Painful Side Of True as either a CD or Download from You can also download the album from iTunes.

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