Seasons Change – Joel (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

27788412_1677126015664595_4940261110465672751_o.jpgAs soon as opening salvo Spirit of Summer kicks in, you know that you are in for a bit of a treat. Its deft blend of addictive pop vibes and solid rock drive, its sassy and sublime, slick lines hit like oasis waters in a musical desert of up-tight indie and po-faced pop. And it is this vibrancy which drives right through the album. The styles may change slightly, pop-rock fun becomes grove some funk (On Top) which in turn becomes infectious staccato blues (Speak My Language) which becomes stadium anthem (Between Us), and so on, but there is a consistency and focus beating at its heart.

It may shimmer with a pop sheen, but Seasons Change is a world music of sorts, reflecting the cultural diversity of the modern world and saying something about the exotic blends found in Joel’s South-East Texas home. It is a place where southern blues, latino beats and funky Caribbean vibes all hang in the air, where serious rock and throw-away pop sit side by side and where past traditions and future potential compete for space. Its all there for the plucking but it takes a gifted artist to capture it all on record. It takes an artist like Joel.

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