Write You A Song Capitol Records Nashville
It’s refreshing to see a young country artist wear a Stetson straw cowboy hat. With modern country singers opting for trucker hats and V-necks, sometimes a tight pair of wranglers and a pearl snap shirt can feel just right. A throwback to the 90s twang of Garth and George but with a touch of a modern outlaw sound – Eric Church on his best behavior - Jon Pardi isn’t about to waste his time with his debut album, “Write You A Song.”
“What I Can’t Put Down” was the right choice to open the album. The immediate guitar riffs prep you for a solid debut effort. Sure there are the obligatory cliché songs of beer, girls and trucks and the sappy lost love: “Up All Night” and “That Man,” but they are sandwiched between genuine songs with substance.
“Missing You Crazy” is a fast romp complete with fiddle solo and a sing-along chorus that was manufactured to be part of a soundtrack for fun times. “Happens All The Time” is a song that should play as you sway with a lover under the light of the moon or in a really sad honky-tonk with a glass of whiskey in your hand. It can easily pass for a Brooks and Dunn song, and that’s a good thing.
Themes of youth, good times and past love are recurrent without being monotonous, a good part due to Pardi’s role as a front man that knows his audience.
Pardi, a native of small town Northern California knows where he came from (Dixon…what what!), but is now as Nashville as they come. He’s got an opening spot locked for Dierks Bentley’s upcoming tour and a spot at the Stagecoach Country Music Festival. Get ready to Pardi y’all.
The San Diego Reader published my review….read it here.
Real Estate - Atlas
Domino Records…Get it Here
The instant “Had To Hear” begins you welcome back the long awaited jangle of Real Estate. The ultimate indie pop band of the moment knows exactly what you expect of them and their third LP, Atlas, delivers. So much dream pop guitar licks your might drift into a daytime daze and not even know what hit you.
“Past Lives" is a leisurely transition piece. As the title suggests, the beat feels like memories fading into the past, like a Polaroid developing in reverse.
Martin Courtney sings “I might as well be talking backwards” in the nicest way possible making a condescending topic into a sweet love ode. “Talking Backwards,” is the peppy step towards spring that you didn’t ask for but now you can’t live without it. “April’s Song” instrumental indie jam that no Real Estate album could be complete without. Should I be jealous of a girl or the month?
“The Bend" has a strangely appealing Steely Dan vibe that has entranced me and forced my shoulders to sway back and forth.
“Crime" is the song of the album. It’s got it all…jingle-jangle guitar, hazy vocals and boppy tempo without being over ambitious. It’s beautiful for a summer moon lit night. “Horizon” is a kick drum delight of what seems out of reach but you realize has been next to you the entire time.
“Primitive” is a love song to the max. Could pass for Merle aside from the boyish vocals and lack of slide guitar. I think they should consider a country version. I’m not joking.
“How Might I Live” – Alex Bleeker’s time to shine.
The choice of “Navigator” to end the album acts as a perfect sway along end cap. They are older and it shows, topics of understanding what they have, not what they want shows the maturity of the late twentysomethings. They know they have a smooth road ahead and don’t any need directions…for now.