John Spanyol - EP
Owain Paciuszko 08/06/2010
Opening with a smooth jazz murmur that left turns into a kind of Maroon 5-like pop track, accompanied by Spanyol's sung-rapped vocals, the lead track Don't Make A Sound feels like what a collaboration between Anthony Kiedis and Ben Folds might sound like. It has pleasant instrumentation, nice bursts of brass in amongst simple electric guitar motifs and an upbeat piano line, which all cobbles together to make a reasonably listenable pop track.
Never Let It Go has a melancholy piano reminiscent of Ed Harcourt and Spanyol's vocals soften and recall, once again, Ben Folds. Spanyol's day-job saw him working on Sony's Singstar video game, and he seems to have consumed a lot of pop knowledge and corralled it into the fine pop production on this EP. Unfortunately his lyrics don't quite have enough verve and passion to really elevate the tracks beyond merely pleasant.
Closer Good Things has a rousing Scissor Sisters energy, mixed with a bouncy jazz-pop vibe. Spanyol is a curious property, he's musically very strong, but whilst his voice could be used well, it suffers wrapping itself around the song's lyrics which are occasionally trite or just a touch insipid. Nevertheless, as far as male singer-songwriters dabbling in the pop model go, Spanyol is more promising and imaginative than 95%, so could be worth keeping an occasional ear to...