STATE LOTTERY, THE: When the Night Comes: LP

Jan 20, 2011

When the Night Comes isn’t necessarily a departure for The State Lottery. And I can’t imagine any fans of their previous full-length, Cities We’re Not From, being bummed at how it sounds. It’s not a departure, but there’s a definite shift at work here. Call it a slight “stylistic advancement,” or a “band maturing,” or whatever you want. The point being, it’s entirely effective. While Cities… was rich with a kind of wandering solemnity, When The Night Comes is firmly entrenched in rock and roll and the kind of detail-rich lyricism that dudes like Springsteen and Josh Ritter do so well with. While the band still manages to pen songs that sound like a Detroit winter come to life, this time around it’s filtered through the wire mesh of rock and roll, JD Salinger’s short stories, healthy doses of saxophone and organ, and even a hint here and there of ‘60s pop. I’m surprised they pulled it off, and more surprised that they make it sound so damn effortless. Bobby Colombo’s vocals still fall between Blake Schwarzenbach and Brendan Kelly, but his ability to tell a story has improved massively since the last record. When the Night Comes has its joyous, thundering gems (“Coming Alive” and “East Jordan”) and its heart-stung lamentations (“Little Song” and the album closer, “Spring, 2008, Detroit”). It’s what I wish people thought “indie rock” was when they used that term, and it’s probably one of the best records that came out in 2010. You can get the LP version from Salinas, or a free download of it at I’d suggest you do both—the art is beautiful and the lyrics are more than worth reading. This is an awesome band and a terrific LP.  –keith (Salinas)