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CD REVIEW: Jeff Wessman - "Multiples of One"
By David Lockeretz - 10/17/2002 - 03:11 AM EDT

Artist: Jeff Wessman
Album: "Multiples of One"
CD Review: Somebody get this boy a band.

Jeff Wessman can definitely write songs, and his multi-instrumental versatility (including vibraphone, piano, guitar and more) is showcased on this CD. The problem is, he needs a band.

There's only so much that can be done with overdubbing, and while it took me a few tracks to realize that I was listening to the work of a one-man-band, I could sense that something was amiss. The mixes sound thin, as if the full spectrum of sound is not represented, and some of the grooves seem awkward and stiff. The rawness of Wessman's vocals is appealing, a la Jayhawks and solo Lennon, but at times his overdubbed background vocals don't match as far as pitch and phrasing.

The good news is that there are some excellent songs on this CD. My favorites include the jazz-influenced "Mary by Moonlight", the funky "Always Be Loved" and the folksy, poetic "Flower Child." Some of the songs become repetitious after a while, but for the most part, the material is consistent. Wessman manages to find variety without dilution.

With the right players supporting him, Wessman, with his sense of history and context, could easily become a major singer songwriter. For more information about Jeff Wessman, visit www.artofthesun.com.


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