Running from a Gamble by Company of Thieves

Running from a Gamble, released on May of 2011, is the second studio album by Company of Thieves. It was released under Wind-Up record label. Genevieve Schatz (the vocalist) and Marc Walloch (the guitarist) wrote all of the songs on the album. It did not take long for this album to become my new favorite record and “Won’t Go Quietly” to become my favorite song. As a classically trained (German method) violinist, I would like to point out just a few reasons why every person should take the time to listen to Company of Thieves.

The album, unlike so much of current new music, has very deep and meaningful lyrics. Every lyric has a meaning instead of bands like Train’s desire to rhyme whether it makes sense in context of the song or not. A particular favorite line from their song “Death of Communication” is as follows: “We struggle and we fight ‘cus it feels good to wonder why our lives are happening”.

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Song topics range from perception to starting the band to existentialism.

A particular thing I like about Company of Thieves music is how they so often create a complex and/or beautiful sheet of music by layering simple lines over each other. The drums are often very simple and just serve the point of keeping the music moving. They keyboardist/organist adds a lot to the music as well. Often he plays non-chord tones (most often pedal-tones) which add interest to the songs.

It does not take a musically trained person to tell that the band has talent, but upon further review, a musical person can easily tell they must have some classical training themselves. The use of non-chord tones is the most prominent example pointing me to this assumption. As stated above pedal-tones can be heard in many of their songs but other non-chord tones are also incorporated. My favorite is their use of appoggiaturas in “Won’t Go Quietly”. It makes it catchy and adds to the musical layers I mentioned before. But one of the best things about this band may be that Genevieve’s voice is just as beautiful as she is.

Running from a Gamble not only lives up to, but surpasses Ordinary Riches (the band’s first album). It is great to see the growth of the band musically and creatively. I recommend that every person goes out and listens to this album, it is money well spent. I can’t wait to see what Company of Thieves has up their sleeves for their next trick.

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