Monday, March 15, 2010

CD of the Day: ‘On My Way,’ Ben Kweller (2004)

Ben Kweller is a master of many styles, and he puts them all on display here. He hits everything from Replacements-esque trash rock (“The Rules”) to folk (“On My Way”) to pop/rock (“My Apartment”) to big-chord classic rock reminiscent of The Who (“Down”). He even takes a stab at a “Hey Jude”-type piano ballad (“Living Life”).

The only drawback to “On My Way” is Kweller’s voice, which can wander and sound strained when he goes for high notes just a bit out of his range. He also tends to fall into the same trap as latter-day Ryan Adams, caterwauling over top of the melody at times rather than syncing with it.

Nevertheless, “On My Way” is a fine record, and laid the groundwork for my favorite Kweller release, the self-titled effort that came two years later.

Grade: B+

Favorite Track: “I Need You Back”

Least Favorite Track: “Hospital Bed"

No comments: