The State Lottery - When the Night Comes [12-inch] (Cover Artwork)

The State Lottery

When the Night Comes [12-inch] (2010)


I'll start by stating that I'm normally biased to music I find on And who wouldn't be? They've introduced me to Banner Pilot, Iron Chic, the Holy Mess, Sundials, Thousandaires get the point. I stumbled upon the sophomore effort of a band known as the State Lottery. I've never been a huge fan of folk punk but, man, this is something special. The raw emotions of the album suggest the band really poured everything into this one, and it does not disappoint. This has been my album of the summer, and as fall approaches, I'm starting to think it'll be in my CD player well into October.

"Coming Alive" reminds me of what would've happened if Issac Brock (Modest Mouse's lead singer for all you punx out there) had decided to front a punk band, complete with a saxophone and piano. It can certainly be noted as one of the stronger tracks, and starts the album off on the right foot, giving the listener an idea of what he'll be hearing through the next eight songs.

The must-listen song off the album, "Stories," has been on repeat on my CD player a few times now, a tall task considering my attention span. The first twangy guitar riff immediately does enough to draw Drag the River comparisons. The quiet verses waste no time dissolving into a chorus that will knock you on your ass. If you get the chance to listen to this song as you drive along a long road surrounded by corn as the sun comes up--as I get to do on my way to work--you WILL get goosebumps.

"Geysers" is one of those songs that's really fun to listen to drunk. The main chord progression reminds me of that '70s song about the boiz bein' back in town. Don't let that turn you off: Shouted vocals, simple rhythm , and a heavy amount of saxophone blend well here.

Good ol' male/female vocal combo comes into play on the next portion of the album: "Little Song" proves a soft, mellow, glimmering track. "East Jordan" could be the latest Defiance, Ohio single, but the lyrics stand out here more for myself than anywhere in the album: "We played our hearts like instruments / And the days rang out like joyous hymns." Yeah, it's about summer love. Cliché? Maybe, but the State Lottery does it in a way that really makes you feel like you're there. "Future Selves" really slows it down: guitar-heavy and labored, which is enough to make this my least favorite track on the album. It's still solid, but "Fourth Street" really steals all the thunder from the later half of the album. Simple, heartfelt lyrics and a chorus reminiscent of early Fake Problems make this song pretty powerful. "Spring, 2008, Detroit" is an 8:11 ballad--not my cup of tea, but I can certainly see why the band placed it as the finale.

One downside to the album is the fact that upon first listen, the songs preceding the first two really do blend unless you give them a second or third chance. Other than that, this album is a definite winner. If you enjoy melodies, vocals, lyrics, passion in the vein of Lucero, Drag the River and Bob Dylan soaked in whiskey, this is for you. If not, listen anyway.