Album cover for The Cannonballers by Colony House

Album Review: Colony House – The Cannonballers

A friend of mine mentioned Colony House some time ago.

I’d never heard of them. So, upon the release today of their fourth album The Cannonballers, these indie rockers hailing from Tennessee staked their claim.

Thankfully, the funk rock movement from 10 years or so ago died as quickly as it rose to prominence, but the Indie rock scene has carried on arguably since the 1990s relatively unscathed with some bands reaching the pinnacle while most enjoy a smaller but rabid audience. Inhabited by singer Caleb Chapman and drummer Will Chapman, brothers, along with guitarist Scott Mills and Parke Cottrell on bass, construction on Colony House began in 2009 before the band released their debut album in 2014 and now three in the last six years.

The band-name-sounding album The Cannonballers opens with the punk-paced, short-length “Landlocked Surf Rock” a surfs up, dude! kind of lick and the song title itself another band self-characterization, but the rest of the album embraces the traditional chill vibes associated with this style of low-key rock and roll.

“Would Ya Could Ya” dials in on the essence of Colony House in this cleverly melodic track that springs to life from the opening chords. The sorta of title track “Cannonballers” minus “the” would of could of have been a Switchfoot song but Colony House prevails if it were so. The refrain about a minute in is obsessively catchy. “Trying to Survive” bears a likeness to Imagine Dragons. Maybe send them this song as a reminder of what made them, them.

The stripped-down production to “One of Those Days” lets Caleb Chapman do all the talking in what amounts to a good natured lament on having one of those days. The pensive  “Everything” slows the tempo on this generally fast moving album and dropping lyrics like “I want nothing to do with love if it ain’t me that you’re thinking of / I want nothing to do with truth if the truth is that it’s me without you / I want everything to do with you but I’m unable to tell you” places this track on the upper hierarchy of boy meets girl love songs. Well done guys. I like it.

Colony House sends off the last half of The Cannonballers with largely standard indie rock fare in “Man On the Run,” “Don’t Give Up On Me” and “Do You Ever Feel” this somewhat lack of spontaneity, highlighting the first half of the record, broken up by the reflective “Man On the Run” and the Hawaiian-tinged album closer “I’m Not Dyin’.”

Colony House blends relaxing harmonies combined with sometimes anthemic melodies in the 11-song 33-minute The Cannonballers. Sometimes reminiscent of Imagine Dragons they often employ the skip-in-your-step beat similar to Neon Trees. Colony House describes themselves as a no frills no gimmicks kind of band, but The Cannonballers makes a splash and they are far from ordinary.

Grade: B

Colony House The Cannonballers Songs:

  1. Landlocked Surf Rock
  2. Would Ya Could Ya
  3. Cannonballers
  4. Trying to Survive
  5. One of Those Days Love
  6. Everything
  7. Don’t I Know You
  8. Man On the Run
  9. Don’t Give Up On Me
  10. Do You Ever Feel
  11. I’m Not Dying

2 thoughts on “Album Review: Colony House – The Cannonballers

  1. Nice writeup Andrew. I will need to check this out. I have so much stuff loaded up in my Apple Music library its bonkers. lol
    But a good bonkers I will add!

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