Friday, April 16, 2010

Review: Andy Stone "You Don't See Many of These Nowadays"

Andy Stone's new CD, "You Don't See Many of These Nowadays" could refer to any number of things...VHS tapes, rotary phones, Bengal roof turtles, unselfish politicians...or could be referring to his own brand of music.

Stone describes his music like this: "Imagine a dinner party hosted by the Beatles, with a guest list that includes XTC, Squeeze, the Zombies and Kinks, Aimee Mann and Elvis Costello". The description is quite accurate, keeping in mind his CD is more like dinner and not dessert. Stone writes smart music for grown ups, and I imagine that fans of 60s/70s pop are going to connect to this much better than the younger crowd.

To his credit, Stone strives to be melodic and reaches a few great heights on "You Don't See Many of These Nowadays". The songs are generally tuneful and lush, but honestly I found my mind wandering off about one third of the way through each song. There's nothing bad...but nothing stellar either. Same could be said for the vocals, which are contributed by Phil Angotti, Mike Przygoda, and Tom Godsman (Accidental Charm) - they are serviceable, but less than remarkable. The rather low grade production value is another shortcoming of the record. Overall, very middle of the road all round. The main highlight for me was the catchy tune "Talk About the Love", which truly succeeded in blending Stone's retro and more contemporary influences.

There is a lot to like about Andy Stone's "You Don't See Many of These Nowadays", just not a whole lot to love.

iPOD-worthy: 2, 3, 5

Andy Stone on MySpace. Official site.

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