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The Great Crusades’ ninth studio album, Until the Night Turned to Day, saw its first daylight in a beer-soaked rehearsal room at Chicago’s Superior Street center. The four longtime band members, Brian Hunt (bass, vocals), Brian Krumm (vocals, guitar), Brian Leach (guitar, keyboards, vocals) and Christian Moder (drums, keyboards, vocals) booked two days at the space and proceeded to simply play as they do best—in live rock band mode. They recorded all the raucous results, and, weeks later, started combing through. The band then used the live “jams” to construct songs and record them with surprisingly vivacious results.

The final result is a new record inspired by the twilight hours that combines the best of the band’s wide-ranging influences, from Thin Lizzy, Aerosmith and Pixies on the harder rocking side to Glen Campbell, the Smiths and the Jayhawks on songs that veer more into Americana territory. The lyrics find Krumm and company in vivid storytelling mode, with forays, memories and shenanigans in Berlin, Boston, Chicago and Galway spilling forth. Krumm also takes on the current political atmosphere with a sour taste in his mouth on songs such as “Little Crown,” “King of the Altered States” and others. In many ways, Until the Night Turned to Day feels like a cross-country drive to the California coast, with many stops in between to tell tales and sing about today, tomorrow, yesterday and the great beyond.