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(53:24, Rock Indiana)
TRACK LIST: 1. Love Explosion 4:07 2. Save Me From Myself 3:07 3. Rise Above the Clouds 3:37 4. Radiant Future Days 5:27 5. Hearts on Fire 7:27 6. Breaking Out of This Cage 4:17 7. Not of This World 4:17 8. New Creation 6:17 9. Miracle Mile 3:07 10. Best Is Yet to Come 3:57 11. Street Called Straight 5:17 13. Love Is Alive 2:17 LINEUP: Jeremy – vocals; guitars, bass; Mellotron, keyboards Dave Dietrich – drums Todd Borsch – bass With Allison Gruner – cello
Prolusion. US composer and musician JEREMY is one of the more productive artists I have encountered over the years. With dozens of solo albums and a plethora of side projects of various kinds he tends to release or participate on several releases each and every year. "Love Explosion" dates back to 2012, and was released on the Spanish label Rock Indiana.
Analysis. Of the many genres Jeremy Morris has made a name for himself in, power pop and psychedelic rock are arguably the ones he is best known for. And when he opts for a title such as "Love Explosion" for a CD, you will kind of expect that the songs on such a production will cover either one or the other of those, at least if you are already familiar with Jeremy's musical exploits. As it turns out one might describe this disc as covering both styles, but also heading off into landscapes somewhat different in scope altogether. The opening five songs, with the gloriously catchy title track as the first, cover familiar grounds for existing fans of Jeremy. Acoustic guitars with plucked melodic overlays, firm and dominant drum patterns with some nifty sophisticated details and bass motifs supplementing the proceedings nicely and with some energy. Careful use of keyboards flavor the arrangements, as does a fairly liberal use of psychedelic oriented guitar soloing, occasionally given further emphasis by keyboards and the occasional Mellotron. With Jeremy's trademark and distinct vocals on top, with associations towards the likes of The Beatles and Electric Light Orchestra a nice summary of music and vocals both. Well made songs as is customary on just about every Jeremy album I have encountered so far, with title track Love Explosion being a clear highlight among these positive, vibrant compositions. Breaking Out of This Cage heralds a marked change however. Darker toned, aggressive and sporting quite a few rougher edges, this item is one that takes a sharp left turn into the realms of 80's garage rock, a genre I'm not that familiar with admittedly and where I'll usually namedrop the Australian band The Lime Spiders as far as associations go, as they like Jeremy on this track did include subtle psychedelic tinged flavorings to their escapades. The remaining tracks on "Love Explosion" don't continue in this vein however; instead, we're given a partial return to the material that opened this album. Somewhat less jubilant in scope however, somewhat less psychedelic as well, and with arrangements of a subtly more compact nature. Still with associations towards Electric Light Orchestra and The Beatles hovering around the overall sound, but at least for me I found these compositions to be somewhat closer to the likes of Tom Petty in overall sound. The differences are subtle, or perhaps come as a result of steadily becoming more familiar with this album as it unfolds, but my experience is that what is described as side 2 on this CD consists of material subtly more oriented towards classic pop-rock and subtly less towards psychedelic rock and what many tend to describe as power pop. This doesn't impact the quality of the material at hand however: all of these songs are just as charming and easy to like as those familiar with Jeremy as an artist have come to expect.
Conclusion. "Love Explosion" is an album of two halves and the odd one out, the first half staying put in a psychedelic rock and power pop oriented landscape and concluding with a garage rock inspired creation, while the second one transports us to landscapes with something more of a classic pop-rock oriented expression. Well made and well performed throughout, and I'd suspect that those who enjoy the likes of The Beatles, Electric Light Orchestra and Tom Petty should be something of a key audience, especially those who like all three of those.
OMB=Olav M Bjornsen: October 8, 2013
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