The opening guitar line of the latest Silos CD sounds like a warning: Abandon all preconceived notions, listeners. The guitar is also a foreshadowing of frontman Walter Salas-Hamara's voice, which even longtime fans will admit can be described as droning - yet mesmerizing.
The Silos have been around since 1986, with Salas-Hamara the only constant through label and musician changes. The earliest CDs were ahead of their time; alt.-country before there was a label for it. And the band has, honestly, never put out a bad original CD.
The current lineup with Drew Glackin on bass and guitar and Konrad Meissner on drums has been together for a while, long enough to forge a distinct identity, and the last CD in 2004, "When the Telephone Rings," showed a band ready to take risks.
But this first release on Bloodshot still sets a surprising new tone. The Silos rock beautifully, on songs like the opening "Behind Me Now," the perfect single, "Tell Me You Love Me" and the title track. The band brings the same kind of intensity to the slower songs, like "People Are Right," which comes closest to any claim to alt.-country label. The intriguing and memorable collection of tunes improves with each listen.