Ninth House/ Realize and It’s Gone/ Sinister Records

Filed under: Recorded Music,Reviews — doktorjohn August 22, 2007 @ 3:05 am

This, Ninth House‘s third full length album continues in the band’s deep, dark, cemetery & western style featuring the moody poetry and vocals of baritone Mark Sinnis. Twelve tracks are offered, ranging from metal-flavored country rock to smooth, plaintive ballads to jangly honky tonk. As in their prior CDs, minor key melodies prevail. Ninth House ventures beyond the level of pessimism that is customary in traditional country & western to the extent of crossing over into Gothic rock. All songs are originals except the 1948 antique, “Ghost Riders in the Sky,” resurrected in a commendable version reminiscent of Sinnis’s idol, Johnny Cash. The title track is a gem, an intoxicating anthem that unites existential protest with passionate, irresistible hard rock. Though the topics are generally dark and the melodies mournful, the driving rock rhythms and exuberant guitar accompaniment ironically lift the listener to a kind of nihilistic euphoria.