All it takes is 3 chords and a dream!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Escaping Pavement - UpRooted

Escaping Pavement – UpRooted
2013, Escaping Pavement

Escaping Pavement co-lead vocalists Emily Burns and Adam Markowitz met as teenagers at a blues open mic night, and they have not been apart in the ten years since then.  Over time the pair has added Niall Sullivan (bass/backing vox) and Evan Profant (drums/backing vox) to become one of the most dynamic Americana/rock bands out of Detroit, Michigan.  Burns and Markowitz split lead vocal and lead guitar duties, opening up a realm of possibilities with their mix of personal styles.  Escaping Pavement’s debut album, UpRooted, shows a delicious mix of Americana, country and classic rock styles, with two dynamic vocalists giving it all they’ve got.

UpRooted opens with "Burn This Bridge", a solid opening rocker with a bit of muted attitude. Vocalist Emily Burns has glorious pipes, but the vocals are mixed way too high here, giving the ensemble an unbalanced sound.  "Daydream's Haze" is a gently rolling rocker that gets your toes tapping. It's a solid album track that's a comfortable listen. "Here Again" finds Adam Markowitz taking over in a definite 1970's groove ala The Doobie Brothers. The southern rock flavor continues on "Smoke Filled Existence", a guitar driven anthem that would be right at home on an old school AOR format radio station. 

Burns takes the lead on "Part of Goodbye", sounding more than a little like singer Jess Klein.   There's a delicious energy to this blues-infused rocker that will get your toes tapping. "On The Wind" is built around a catchy, extended guitar riff. The path to freedom here is flight in one of the more melodically intriguing songs on the album. Markowitz is out front this time around, and his understated delivery is ideal for the song. "Drive Me to Sadness" finds Markowitz at his best, with a soulful Americana sound ala Darius Rucker. This is the catchiest song on the album, and the one most like to breach the crystal tower of commercial radio. Markowitz and Burns share vocals on "Winter Homecoming", a folk rocker with a Celtic inspired riff at its core.  It feels as if Escaping Pavement is really hiring their stride as the album progresses. The band closes with "4th of July", with Burns out front for a languorous blues rocker that clocks in at nearly five-and-a-half minutes. Burns is on top of her game, and Escaping Pavement is as tight as a band can be. 

Emily Burns and Adam Markowitz make the most of their talents, as well as those of their dynamic rhythm section on UpRooted.  Escaping Pavement really hits their stride about mid-album and never looks back.  The band manages to capture a live aesthetic on UpRooted, giving listeners an insight into the Escaping Pavement’s elemental on-stage feel.  Despite some early production issues, UpRooted will be remembered as one of the best Americana debuts of 2013.

Rating: 4 Stars (Out of 5)

Learn more at

No comments: