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CD REVIEW: PAWL - Guest house
By Ivan Nossa - 03/12/2011 - 02:21 PM EST

Artist: PAWL
Album: Guest house
Genre: Jazz-Pop, Folk Rock and Pop
Sounds Like: Jamie Cullum, Gavin De Graw, Bruce Hornsby, Boston
Technical Grade: 8/10
Production/Musicianship Grade: 8/10
Commercial Value: 8/10
Overall Talent Level: 9/10
Songwriting Skills: 9/10
Performance Skill: 8/10
Best Songs: Set me off
CD Review: PAWL is a singer and songwriter whose gift include playing many instruments and his favorites are keyboards and percussions. Guest House is his first official attempt to record a solo studio CD. He recorded the CD quickly over 4 weekends, with the help of friends he chose 6 songs among his long list of compositions.  

Despite being a personal production the sound of the CD is top quality. He decided to give percussion the principal role and added violins, guitars, keyboards and bass. He describes his music as cinematic pop, I would more likely call it pop jazz with a great influence from the best of rock.

The arrangements with the use of backing vocals and choral instrumentation are good and give the album a nice old feeling that remind me of the great rock bands of the 70s with a jazz influence. The single “Set me off” has everything a great song should have. A great jazzy and catchy song in the style of new young jazz players like Jamie Cullum or more experienced like Bruce Hornsby. His voice is pop/jazzy and at times he sounds like Billy Joel. Lyrically the songs tell stories and are easy to be liked after a couple of times you press play.

Even if the tracks are fun there is a serious side to PAWL compositions that can be spot easily and there is nothing wrong with it. This is important and contributes to creating his own musical world. Furthermore I believe he is a courageous musician because he does not follow what is trendy at the moment but writes his own music in his personal style. Not the easiest product to sell on the market but a beautiful EP.

A very good first attempt from young PAWL, an album that combines the maturity of a good musician and the freshness of a young composition. He is on the right  path to became a musician whose music could not be missed.  

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