Out of the Darkness is one of a kind -- an acoustic-folk concept album about the power-grid failure in the Northeast last year. (Why on earth a group from Fort Collins would feel compelled to tackle such a topic is a bigger mystery than the blackout itself.) In the end, the four players in vee -- Sam Ernst, G-Man (Grant Gordy), Deej (Daniel Johnson) and Dre (Andrea Vitullo) -- aren't quite able to turn their idiosyncratic notion into a cogent narrative, but they score marks for sheer oversized ambition.
The playing is first-rate throughout, and instrumental cuts such as "The Hours, They Seem an Eternity" and a disorderly collage dubbed "As the Lights Go, So Too Do We" radiate atmosphere. The lyrics of several tracks intrigue as well, including "The Dream," a fantasia that incorporates Alanis Morissette and Bell Biv DeVoe, and a song that's called "Winston Churchill" for reasons too complicated to relate. Other cuts, like "Sing Me to Sleep," are more straightforward -- and less interesting as a result.
There's no telling what all of this means, but the sparks provided by vee device occasionally light up the Darkness.
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene each week with music news, trends, artist interviews and concert listings. We'll also send you special ticket offers and music deals.