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Burn The Good Ones Down
Red Letter Agent
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Reviewed: 5/31/2005 by Farah

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Local Atlanta darlings Red Letter Agent have had quite a buzz building up around them since the release of their “Under Starlight” EP last year, which won them an award for Best Local Release from Atlanta Music Guide. With just one listen to the new release “Burn the Good Ones Down,” it’s easy to understand why. RLA incorporates the same kind of strong melodies into their songs that have made Coldplay a worldwide phenomenon, but lead singer James Templeton’s voice is not at all dreary like Chris Martin’s can be at times. In fact, it’s the complete opposite – saccharine sweet. On “Hide Your Love Away,” Templeton floats over the backdrop of soft melodies created by his band mates on the verses and then soars above them on the choruses. Some listeners might get bored with the concurrent theme of all the songs being love, but if a band is going to write only sappy love songs, they should do at least do it well. RLA does it so well that they could make the most cynical of hearts and ears believe that “love is the only cure,” a line from the EP’s title track. Each one of the songs sounds like it would be right at home on the radio. It’s no wonder Atlanta’s mainstream rock station 99X has put “Burn the Good Ones Down” into regular rotation regardless of the fact that the band is unsigned, a rare accomplishment in the Clear Channel controlled radio climate of today. It’s evident that RLA has an even more successful future ahead of them with this record that will leave its listeners feeling like they have sugar high that’s sure to keep them coming back for more.

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