Music — Thinking Aloud!

Thinking Aloud!

by Seth Hoy

Boston rock band gets loud at Hog’s Trough

Young enough to have a future, yet mature enough to be themselves, Aloud is still experimenting with their sound instead of mimicking whatever band is getting the most airtime this week.

“We’re still learning,” said Aloud vocalist/guitarist Jennifer De La Osa. “We try to do the best we can with what we have. We’re still experimenting with things — trying to give people honest rock n’ roll without being cliché.”

Aloud will get loud and dirty at the Hog’s Trough Saloon at 342 Lincoln St. in Manchester on Thursday, March 24 at 9 p.m. Aloud will take the stage for this 21+ show with Those Who Wait and Corporate Whore.

“I’ve heard so many bands,” De La Osa continued, “that do one thing or just have one sound or someone else’s sound. They’ve really perfected cliching the hell out of it. For us, there’s a lot we haven’t tapped into yet. That’s the cool part — watching ourselves grow.”

Aloud has been around since 2001, but the four most current members joined up in 2004 — Jennifer De La Osa and Henry Beguiristain on guitar and vocals; Roy Fontaine on bass and Ross Lohr on drums.

The black-and-tan-clad group came up from Florida to Boston specifically for the rock scene. They now call venues like Ralph’s Diner in Worcester and T.T. the Bear’s in Boston home. They happen to dress in black shirts and tan jackets as a matter of band style — but between you and me, take note of the black-and-tan beer foam on their upper lips.

Inspired by bands like The Beatles, U2 and Oasis, Aloud describes their music as edgy pop and focuses heavily on their lyrics. Because without lyrics, you’re just making pretty noises — which seems to be working well for Yanni.

“We’re heavy on songwriting,” De La Osa said. “We just happen to play electric guitars because we love them. I wouldn’t say we’re purely rock ‘n’roll though. It comes out as rock with big drums and bass. We’re big into harmonies, too — some people describe us as edgy pop.”

According to De La Osa, the foundation of a good band is built with strong and meaningful lyrics. She should know; she and bandmate Beguiristain pen most of the lyrics. De La Osa also suggests that the resurgence of one-hit wonders was sparked around 1997 as the quality of lyrics plummeted.

“I don’t have a favorite guitarist,” De La Osa said, “But I do have favorite lyricists. I respect Paul McCartney and John Lennon for sitting down and writing really great songs. I respect the craft in general because I know how hard it is.”

“Help Me Help You,” for example, is a song De La Osa wrote off their six-track debut album, The Sooner It Comes, released back in June. The song is about her move to Boston and whether it was the right decision. Starting over somewhere new and the feeling of hope that comes with new experiences are common themes across the album.

“There’s a theme of desperate youth on the album,” De La Osa said. “Whatever it is the world thrusts on you — when you leave home and you’re excited about new things — it’s an intense feeling. Maybe you’re mixed up and you don’t know how to react to new situations? Maybe the way you view the world is changing. I kind of liken it to U2’s Boy in that sense.”

A lot has changed for these young rockers since they starting jamming in New England. Two years ago Aloud played about 40 shows and last year they played more than 100. And Aloud is showing no sign of unplugging or selling out. They’ve played all over the Northeast, including stops in New York at The Delancey on the Lower East Side and parts of New Jersey. The band plans on driving down to Baltimore and Washington, D.C., this June.

But for now, Aloud will storm the stage at the Hog’s Trough Saloon with enough energy and candor to make you wonder what is they’re laughing about. Which, De La Osa reports, will probably be Beguiristain accidentally pulling out his mike cord.

For more information on Aloud, visit www.allthingsaloud.com.

- Seth Hoy

 
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