Jonathan Cavier – Blue Room
I really like this album quite a bit. For ten years, Jonathan Cavier performed under the name “Alan Clark” as part of the duo Eye Talk. During those ten years that outfit released five albums. Now with this new name, he has launched a solo career. This is his newest album, and has a nice mix of accessible music. It all seems to meld well together, while managing to vary enough from song to song to keep it interesting.
The title track starts this album. I like the fact that there are multiple layers of vocals on the latter parts of this song. The cut has a lot of energy and a tendency to get you caught up in the beat. It’s a good tune, but somehow just feels like it misses a bit.
A mellower piece, “When You Come Around” works better. It doesn’t have the energy and drive of the last tune, but seems more charming in a lot of ways. The chorus is catchier, and the piece just does a better job of grabbing the listener.
Another catchy song, “Hollywood” is fun. It has a beat that’s sure to catch you. The vocals are better than those on the first two songs, too. It’s just such a cool tune.
“Phoenix” is even better. It has an insistent energy. The vocal hooks are strong. It’s one of my favorites here. Multiple layers of singing again adds to the charms.
Another highlight, the lush arrangement on “Far Away” works really well. It’s a mellower piece of music, but it has a rather busy percussion line that brings a lot of extra magic to it.
As much as I liked the last one, “I Believe” is a bit of a let-down from that one. For one thing, it’s a bit too similar in terms of intensity. For another, it’s just not as good as that song. Still, it has some definite charms.
I can hear hints of things like Hawkwind on “Somebody Like You.” Of course, it’s also rooted in the more traditional pop rock that makes up the bulk of the album. There is an almost dream-like quality to this, really.
There is a lot of passion on “Right Place.” It is one of my favorites here. I like the singing on this better than on a lot of the rest of the album. The piece is mid-tempo and pretty, but there is a sadness and drama to it.
Bringing some energy and enthusiasm, “Someday” isn’t bad. It just doesn’t really speak to me as much as some of the others do.
Cavier ends the disc with an instrumental titled “Edge of a Singularity.” It’s a bouncy and fun one with some great moments. It’s not one of my favorites, but it works reasonably well.
While this can be a little uneven at times, that almost makes for a more varied ride. This is entertaining from start to finish. You can tell that Cavier (or should I say “Clark?”) is no new-comer to songwriting. There is a maturity to this that you can’t find with someone just getting the hang of creating his own music.