I discovered the latest effort (debut effort?) of River Jack Lee, The Best and Most of Everything, on reddit, where I've had the opportunity to find other self-made/self-promoted music in the past. As always with randomly found tunes, I wasn't sure what to expect when putting my headphones on.
According to the post River Jack provided, this effort was 5 years in the making. As he points out, life often has a way of interfering with the recording process. That being the case, this album is definitely polished and well produced.
Lyrically, it's quite good with a nice story-teller feel to it, though mostly via metaphor. Musically, the guitar lines are nice with bass lines flowing more or less in line without becoming obtrusive, definitely good in this indie-southern feel genre the album seems to be reaching for. On the negative side...a drum machine. There are fewer things I object to more than using a crappy drum machine to play simple beats on any music that isn't techno. Surely, there was someone around who could have laid down this straightforward drum tracks.
When all is said and done, it seems this album is lacking in passion. While the themes are often meant to be subtle, especially on songs like "The Machine" and "Battle Hymn", there seems to be a lack of passion in the vocals. It's a relaxing listen, but easily forgettable once that spin through is over. With any hope, River Jack Lee will continue to work on moving that passion felt in the melody through his voice...and we won't need to wait another 5 years to see if he can do it.
Where to find this album:
- I found it on reddit here
- That link led to River Jack Lee's site on Bandcamp
- Should it become available elsewhere, I'll update that here