Itâ€™s a bit surprising Different Light, the 2007 sophomore release from Sherwood didnâ€™t help make the California band a household name. With their Pet Sounds-era harmonies and a sound the evoked everyone from the Beatles to ELO, the album was pretty damn close pop rock perfection. Their latest, Qu is almost as good. Itâ€™s a bit clichÃ© to talk about a maturing sound in record reviews, but itâ€™s true with this outing. The band is certainly feeling more comfortable with their writing and has never sounded tighter. Tracks like â€œNot Gonna Loveâ€ sound better than anything the band has recorded in the past. Hereâ€™s hoping QU helps the band reach the larger audience they so clearly deserve.
Rating: 8.4 out of 10
Top track: â€œNot Gonna Love,â€ â€œAround Youâ€ and â€œMaybe This Timeâ€
Sherwood â€“ Qu /CDs/12 tracks/2009/MySpace Records/www.myspace.com/sherwood