Local Wire

Luca

Nick Luca, front man of his namesake band Luca, sounds a little confused, and like he might need a hug. The Tucson group's latest album, Sick of Love, has an abundance of lovelorn laments and a strange mixture of rock genres. Luca and his bandmates, Chris Giambelluca (bass and vocals) and Paul Ellis (drums), jump unpredictably between '80s power rock, country rock, and plain old rock 'n' roll throughout the entire album. They can't take all the credit (or the blame) for this wild musical assortment — several other artists contributed to the mayhem. M. Ward pounds the piano on two of the tracks, and Chris Scruggs adds some steel guitar to the mix. All of these helping hands might explain the rock schizophrenia from which the album seems to be suffering. The diagnosis is that each of the songs is strong on its own, but they do not necessarily complement one another. A perfect example is "Rosalie." The song deserves a shout-out because its bass-driven rhythm, quick banjo work and whaling harmonica builds great momentum that quickly drops off with the ballad, "Love Me Too," that follows. As good as the music is, sometimes the stylistic shifts make your head spin. But what this album lacks in fluidity it more than makes up for in quality.
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C. Murphy Hebert