STYLE: Roots/Acoustic RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 22313-12271 LABEL: Independent FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 1
Reviewed by Matt Crossman
Phil's brand of singer/songwriting follows a road well travelled, staying within the traditional confines of guitar-based pop indie, bringing together four chord standard rockers with moments of acoustic balladry in this collection of songs. The album is well produced for an independent release, with some sultry eastern flavours introducing "No Accident" before the gypsy folk takes over, bizarrely delivering what seems to be an anti-evolution rant. "Beautiful"' is bound to split opinion - a no doubt heartfelt love song which seems to work on the familiar "our eyes met across a crowded room" formula, only set in church. Maybe it's just me, but universally expressing delight seems much harder to capture and be sincere than melancholy and despair. "Brand New Day" sees Phil at his most engaging - lyrical intensity and honesty beautifully arranged. Phil cites his influences for this collection as a "blend of U2, REM and Crowded House" - but I detected more than a hint of James about many of the songs. Given the intense competition and sheer quantity of soundalike artists populating today's scene Phil brings a solid approach based on sound guitar playing, pleasant vocals and agreeable melodies - occasionally reaching more intriguing musical heights. In doing so he proves that he's more than your average white Christian male with a six string.
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