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CD REVIEW: Wonderful Johnson
By David Lockeretz - 02/10/2003 - 01:43 PM EST

Artist: Band: Wonderful Johnson
CD Review: Wonderful Johnson shows promise in this 9-song CD. The songs are all fairly catchy, and the musicianship, vocals and production are overall good. However, the band needs more to distinguish themselves from the thousands of other competent-but-not-great bands out there.

Showing the influence of contemporary groups such as Matchbox 20, Five For Fighting and others, Wonderful Johnson perhaps should see what more time-tested songwriters/bands have to offer. This CD is definitely radio-friendly, but it seems very rooted in current culture; if Wonderful Johnson doesn't step up the originality, they might well go the way of Soul Asylum or Material Issue.

This is not a bad CD by any definition. Songs such as "She Said" and "She Wants More" both have good grooves and singable melodies. "Don't Lay Me Down" has a solid alternative rock feel and a few interesting harmonic twists. "Connection" is another catchy one, possibly the best chance for a hit from this CD.

What Wonderful Johnson needs at this point is a more definitive sound, whether it's in the songwriting, production or musicianship. They're good, but the sad fact is that there are bands out there who are better. Wonderful Johnson has to ask themselves what about their music will set it apart from the myriad of other independently released CDs, and once they figure it out, put it into their next release.

For more information about Wonderful Johnson, contact Scott Lepore at BRPM, (800) 240-8218.

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