389. Worlds Away – Crumbacher-Duke
WORLDS AWAY (1990)
After four very successful albums the band Crumbacher disbanded and Stephen Crumbacher and guitarist Christopher Duke joined forces to create a new project that was uncannily similar to Crumbacher with a more rock and guitar driven edge. At times even instruments like piano and acoustic guitar are given spotlight treatment.
The programmed drum beats are heavier and not quite as frenetic. The bass is still not as strong but the heavier guitar gives something fresh to previously techno sound. What remains most prevalent is Stephen Crumbacher’s penchant for writing monstrous hooks. One may not care for the techno overkill at times but one cannot escape the unforgettable melodies.I often believe when writing for this album that Stephen may have been listening to the Beatles and Beach Boys as the melodies and vocals share some of those influences.
Crumbacher did show some growth as a lyricist on this project as theme and concepts seem more mature than previous releases. Not as strictly evangelically themed as the first few albums, the lyrics appear more introspective and personal. This lends itself to the music’s maturity as well. Songs like Last Time, Latter Rain and Tears of Joy show this maturing. But then again there is “Rock in the Heart Place” in which Crumbacher relies onhis previous penchant for playing with popular cliches. It is a shame since musically the song strikes at ELO quite successfully.