The dB's ‘Falling Off the Sky' (Bar/None)
The original lineup of New Wave, power-popping Southern boys known as the dB's are back together in the studio for the first time in 30 years, and “Falling Off the Sky” sounds like they never took off on all those solo flights.
Of course, chief guitar-slinging singer-songwriters Chris Stamey and Peter Holsapple have never been out of touch for long, having recorded two duo albums, “Mavericks” and “Here and Now” in 1991 and 2009 respectively, with original bassist Gene Holder and founding drummer Will Rigby making guest contributions here and there. So it's been a long warm-up since the last dB's album that gathered all the charter members under one roof (1982's “Repercussion), but from the opening garage-band twang and Vox organ strut of Holsapple's “That Time is Gone,” you know dB's still stand for decibels — in the high numbers.
Stamey brings his trademark guitar-driven Brit-influenced melody and beat to “Before We Were Born,” Holsapple throwing in the requisite harmony, and Rigby contributes the broken-hearted bubblegummer “Write Back,” sweeping the listener right back to the heyday of Boyce and Hart, without losing sight of the band's modern edge.