THE GRADE B+
BOTTOM LINE Taming their sound and shedding some Nashville scruffiness.
Maybe The Wild Feathers aren’t so wild after all.
The Nashville quartet’s eponymous debut was a raucous Americana affair — part Southern rock swagger, part alt-country cool.
For their sophomore outing “Lonely Is a Lifetime” (Warner Bros.), the band is far more focused and radio-friendly, like when Kings of Leon entered their “Use Somebody” period. And there is no shortage of radio-ready tracks here.
“Sleepers” channels early Coldplay with its chiming guitar and massive chorus, creating a multi-format singalong. The way Taylor Burns, Ricky Young and Joel King share vocals on “Leave Your Light On” calls to mind recent Goo Goo Dolls hits.
However, The Wild Feathers expand their sound in other directions as well on “Lonely Is a Lifetime.” The title track, with its sweet harmonies and spare instrumentation, gives the album some artistic heft, while the carefree “Happy Again” is alt-country that’s shaggier than ever, as if it leapt off Wilco’s genre-defying debut.
“Overnight,” the album’s first single, directs that energy in a catchier rock direction, showing how the band is ready to forge its own path with all its new influences in tow.