There is something about the new album Carr-isms' by Carr Daniel that makes me want to see this guy live. He has these songs that seem like they would greatly appreciated with a beer in one hand and another beer in the other. Daniel implements various styles such as punk, pop, rock, folk and even blues and somehow makes it works for the most part. One reason is because it’s obvious that he is having fun and not taking himself too seriously. Not every song works on this album but more often that not Daniel strikes gold.
The production is DIY and slightly above average sounding. There were a couple of times where for instance I knew the sound he was going for but it didn't quite get there. Sometimes a guitar sounded like it was a DI and needed a little analog magic to blend into the mix better or something needed to be a bit more prominent.
After a brief intro Daniel gets into it with the soulful, calm as clam sound of ”Sick Man's Blues.” It’s a laid-back tune with just enough heart and energy. The instrumentation is solid but the vocal work really carries the song. Daniel executes vocal harmonies with precision when needed and when not. “REEPERMAN” begins with a descending hum of organ and a lo-fi piano that eventually fades into a sole drum beat. Within a couple of measures clean close sounding guitar, bass and reverb-laced lead guitar enter the arena. The song is free of vocals and feels like more of an improvisational jam session than anything else. Daniel does three chord style punk rock on “Time Away” while “I Was Young (Live at The NoWhere)” is a straight up striped down folk song played on acoustic guitar. He throws in some harmonica to solidify his folk worthiness.
“Mr. Fraiser” sounds up like a pop song you might hear from the late 50’s or early 60’s. It has a “Penny Lane” type vibe that is hard to deny. Carr-isms’ ends with “Return of The Ivory King and The Lizards,” which is the most experimental and epic song amongst the bunch. Daniel says screw it to formal structure and the song has no discerning verse or chorus and instead he decides to see how much he can get away with in 10-plus minutes. It has ebbs and flows and for the most part feels like a homage to free jazz.
This is by no means a cohesive album but still has its charm and unique personality. Daniel seems too ambitious to settle on one style but I would have also liked to hear a way in which he tied the songs together. Overall, Daniel’s flirtations with various styles are successful but it stills need a melding glue to hold it all together.
We are dedicated to informing the public about the different types of independent music that is available for your listening pleasure as well as giving the artist a professional critique from a seasoned music geek. We critique a wide variety of niche genres like experimental, IDM, electronic, ambient, shoegaze and much more.
Are you one of our faithful visitors who enjoys our website? Like us on Facebook