“Something You Weren’t” begins a show that if didn’t have a few turns could be the product of a progressive rock play of sorts. But I’m no expert on this artist, so, call it what you want but it has a storytelling feel about it. There is a looseness to some of it that veers off the beaten path sometimes, and that is why it goes both ways as an album. You’d have to know him enough to know these things, but anyone can get either impression just by listening to it. There is no question he is a crafty songwriter and excellent musician and singer. But the opening track doesn’t encapsulate everything he’s capable of. The second track “Crosshairs” doesn’t either, but it’s a bit more progressive and even has a more aggressive energy to it. And while not being new on the block, that is where it gets testy for any veteran solo artist. He’s done some heavy studio session work in his career, and a lot of his own albums, and while his maturity shows, his spirit remains youthful in this song, with a wise lyrical effort to round it off. This has both a modern and a retro sound and you can pin point where it might be coming from or not. I found it to be one of the more interesting tracks, whether-or not it holds any accessible interest. “Blame It On The Money” is somehow better in both departments, but perhaps a little on the mainstream side for this album. If there are a lot of familiar rings on this album, this has one of them wrapped around it. The problem is I can’t remember where I heard it, but that won’t be his problem. It works on that strength alone for me, but there are better instances to give on tracks like the following “Frequencies” which tones it down a lot. It could be the sleeper track of the album, as it bubbles along nicely enough for jazz to mark a turning point. It’s good enough to call it at least that vital of a point.
“Eye Of Time” is my favorite, but that could change with time, as several of these tracks are growers. But the drums pick up here on what is-actually more like a ballad, than a rocker of any kind. That’s why the drums play such a great role on it and make it worth the whole price of admission. I also recommend “Breakaway” as my second pick, and I find it likely the most accessible track too. “Incarnation” doesn’t float my boat as well, but it helps pull off yet another big moment in the finale which is “SOS with an IOU.” It takes the album out more like it should’ve come in. And that can’t be bad.
YOU TUBE: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hoFuRRHCOEA