steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Floating Opera

"Burning Lighthouse" CD

Spectral Operator Records

Genres: soft rock, adult alternative, pop

Dec 1 - 7 2003

Floating Opera, which shares its name with a 1957 John Barth novel, is a Lincoln, Nebraska based pop / soft rock band led predominately by singer Lori Allison.  Though the songwriting is handled exclusively by Charles Lieurance and Richard Rebarber, the band's line-up seems to vary significantly for each song.  "Ocean," for example, features the talent of only three musicians, whereas the title track of this album, "Burning Lighthouse," boasts an eight-person psuedo-orchestra.

The Floating Opera repertoire is a laidback, blissful breed of soap opera melodrama and basic pop sensibility.  The results are pleasant although limited in appeal.  The twinkly, pretty approach the band takes is often overtly fluffy, and the target audience is most likely going to be of an older generation as a result.  This isn't a problem; it's clear that the band is making no attempt to be ultra-hip or stylish - they are simply playing what they want to play.

As far as mainstream-styled pop goes, this is pretty decent stuff.  Songs like "Ocean" and "Arbus" are pleasant and melodic enough to reel in a good audience, and if you dig a bit soft rock and "adult alternative" music now and then, Burning Lighthouse may be a good album to invest in.  If you aren't sure, check out some of their songs here.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 12 tracks, distributed by Jarmusic, released 2003]