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Crowded House: Time on Earth

Crowded House: Time on Earth

Desc:CD REVIEW: ARTIST: Crowded House
Label:ATO
Format:Album
Media:CD
Genre:Recording

Farewell to the World, Crowded House proclaimed to 250,000 Aussies outside Sydney Opera House in 1996 (the DVD was released January 2007), but the dream was apparently not over. Reportedly, drummer Paul Hester’s suicide in 2005 drew original members Nick Seymour and Neil Finn back to each other, along with later member Mark Hart. The addition of new drummer Matt Sherrod cemented rumors that the House would be resurrected earlier this year, and the anticipation (in some circles, anyway) has been fairly intense ever since. The results? Well, those expecting winks and nudges and signature quirk may be disappointed, but over a stretch of listens, Time on Earth redeems itself as a melodic and mature treatise on the meaning of life, or more importantly, death. First single “Don’t Stop Now” climaxes with Finn hollering, “There’s no number on the house! The birds are headed south!” before muttering something about “a blank piece of paper on top of my head,” and is the stuff of Crowdie genius. “She Called Up” sends up the call Finn received detailing Hester’s death with manic glee recalling “Something So Strong.” The rest is mostly the ruminative night whispers of middle age all sewn together into a fragile human-nature quilt. A great return.

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