For the intro to "Open Up Your Eyes," Tonic's lead guitarist, Jeff Russo, pulls off a wicked little flirtation with the riff from "Badge," and when his guitar gently weeps on "If You Could Only See," Tonic sound enough lik... more »e Cream-era Clapton to take you back 20 years. The point is, Tonic know how to rock. Russo and singer-rhythm guitarist Emerson Hart make a profoundly talented songwriting team whose material could be put up against anything from R.E.M.'s Automatic for the People. Highlighted by the massively seductive "Casual Affair" and the thunderous epic ballad "Mountain," the songs on Lemon Parade will make you nostalgic for music that doesn't sound like it came from a can. --Gail Worley« less
For the intro to "Open Up Your Eyes," Tonic's lead guitarist, Jeff Russo, pulls off a wicked little flirtation with the riff from "Badge," and when his guitar gently weeps on "If You Could Only See," Tonic sound enough like Cream-era Clapton to take you back 20 years. The point is, Tonic know how to rock. Russo and singer-rhythm guitarist Emerson Hart make a profoundly talented songwriting team whose material could be put up against anything from R.E.M.'s Automatic for the People. Highlighted by the massively seductive "Casual Affair" and the thunderous epic ballad "Mountain," the songs on Lemon Parade will make you nostalgic for music that doesn't sound like it came from a can. --Gail Worley
Alex D. from MECHANICSBURG, PA Reviewed on 4/26/2007...
Dwight M. (Dewey) from RUTLAND, MA Reviewed on 8/24/2006...
Tonic's Debut alb.
Great blend of alternative and classic rock
(4 out of 5 stars)
"If you mixed equal parts Zepplin, Deep Purple, Counting Crows and Husker Du, you would end up with a pretty fair description of Tonic. This is a solid album, containing both hard rocking songs like Casual Affair, Mountain, Thick, Wicked Soldier (best song on the cd), and ballads such as Lemon Parade and My Old Man. I originally bought the album for the two singles Open Up your Eyes and If You Could Only See, but after a few times through the cd, I decided they are probably among the weaker tracks on this disk. I would have given this album five stars, but for the fact it tends to get a bit tiresome more quickly than a truly great album - possibly because Emerson Hart's vocals, while quite decent, are nonetheless rather non-distinctive. Good liner notes containing full lyrics - this seems to be a vanishing trend, unfortunately. Overall a solid album that won't generate many regrets from purchasers."
Very good classic/modern rock CD
Brad | CT | 10/13/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This first album by Tonic caught my attention immediately on the strength of its singles, the anthemic leadoff track "Open Up Your Eyes", and the pretty mid-tempo ballad "If You Could Only See". In buying the album and listening to it in its entirety, I was not disappointed."Casual Affair", the second track on the album and placed right between the two biggest singles, was a minor rock radio hit and is a rocking song. The pace of the album slows down a bit with such fare as "Soldier's Daughter" and the title track, although both songs are good.From there on out, the pace is somewhat varied although not that heavy. Tracks like "Wicked Soldier" and "Bigot Sunshine" are solid rockers, while "Mr. Golden Deal" and the nearly six-minute closer "My Old Man" are a bit slow and lacking just a bit in the hooks department.Overall, this is a very good debut album by Tonic, and it certainly contains their biggest hits to date. Better than this, in my opinion, is the follow up album "Sugar", which lacks the big hits (although I heard a few of the songs on radio for a time) but has more memorable songs with better hooks overall. Nonetheless, this album is still recommended as a good hybrid of classic and modern rock. Hopefully, their newly-released album, which I have yet to hear, will be good as well. This band clearly deserves more credit than it has gotten thus far in its young career."
Can I give it six stars?
Brad | 09/14/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I actually wrote a review of "Sugar", Tonic's second album when it was initially released, but realized I had never shared this one...this is where it started. At first glance, it seems like Tonic hasn't really done anything new musically, but this couldn't be further from the truth. They have taken classic guitar rock and modernized it with a great beat and sound, with just a touch of country. They've also thrown in thoughtful and honest lyrics that don't pull any punches. This is an incredible album.There is something for everyone, really. "If You Could Only See" and "Lemon Parade" are radio-friendly and very catchy tracks. "Bigot Sunshine", "Celtic Aggression", "Wicked Soldier", and especially "Casual Affair" rock very hard. "Mr. Golden Deal" and "My Old Man" are quieter and more introspective. And "Mountain" and "Soldier's Daughter" (my personal favorite) have a little bit of everything. I don't think I'll ever get tired of listening to this CD. Buy it now. :)While you are doing it, get "Sugar"...it is awesome too. And finally, if you have the chance to see these guys live, DO IT. They seriously rock."
Some good things don't need change
E. A Solinas | MD USA | 05/18/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"There's a very classic feel to Tonic's "Lemon Parade," with its straight-ahead rock (with a teeny bit of country and a sprinkling of other areas). The songwriting is very good, the music is a mix of good ballads and simple rock songs like "Bigot Sunshine.""Open Up Your Eyes" starts off with a guitar-tuning buzz for twenty seconds, before launching into a catchy rock melody; the harder-edged "Casual Affair"; the insistent and softer "If You Could Only See"; the less intriguing but likable "Lemon Parade"; the more country-ish "Mountain"; "Mr. Golden Deal" is unusually lackluster and slow; "Celtic Aggression" is a haunting tribute to the roots of the band members ("So we came across the water/From the shores of the isle of green/Speaking separate tongues/In the death of culture").Tonic has something that many bands don't have and spend years trying to make up for: Musical talent. It's all about the music. Their songwriting is steady and enticing, with that slight note of dreamlike quality that really good rock songs have. The guitar and percussion are fantastic, hard-hitting and fluid. The music isn't drowned out by electronics. And Emerson Hart's vocals are excellent.While it's not ultra-heavy rock, it's not fluff either. "Lemon Parade" is a satisfying rock album, well-written and well-performed. Definitely worth a look."
TOO MANY LEMONS
M. Schaefer | Carmen Sandiego | 07/17/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I am a big fan of guitar-driven bands like U2, Collective Soul, Gin Blossoms, Toad The Wet Sprocket and the like so I am always keeping an eye out for new acts, and I guess I missed these guys in their prime. I bought this CD based on the song "If You Could Only See" which was on a 1996 - 1997 compilation CD a friend gave me as part of a birthday present and because of all the highly positive reviews on this website.
Upon listening to this album several times, however, I have to admit disappiontment. "If You Could Only See" is by far the best produced song on the album. While "Open Up Your Eyes" is an okay opener to LEMON PARADE, other driving songs like "Casual Affair" and "Bigot Sunshine" are an incoherent mess with lyrics buried under guitars that offer distortion over music. "Thick" is just annoying, like a bad Cold Play song (which is almost every Cold Play song I might add). I did like "Wicked Soldier" a lot though.
Surprisingly, it turned out to be the calmer songs which I prefer on LEMON PARADE. "Soldier's Daughter", "Mountain" and "My Old Man" all caught my attention. They felt like real songs, not just riffs thrown together.
Here's hoping that Tonic's sophomoric effort SUGAR is better than this or some of my friends are going to get a couple of unexpected Christmas presents. I give this **1/2 out of *****."