Brad Eckardia's debut self-titled EP is a pop-oriented collection of songs that draw from a number of different genres. Rock, dance, blues – it’s all there and it actually works quite well for the most part. Eckardia does a good job at creating catchy pop songs that don’t feel like he is trying too hard to make them work. They are a good mix of mainstream pop and indie originality that succeed more then they fail. The recordings sound great and very professional; certainly ready for radio play somewhere. The problem is not where but when. I felt like these songs may have worked well in ‘85 alongside INXS when they were decent or even alongside The Talking Heads. Trust me I know there is quite a leap in musical territory between the bands but that’s the type of music that Brad Eckardia is playing.
The best and catchiest song on the album is the first song entitled “Lights On” which sounds like Cut Copy learned to play guitar. It’s a dance-oriented track that has an explosive chorus that will have you singing along in no time. “The Best You Could Be” left me a bit confused as his vocal style as well as genre seemed to be different than the first song. The track was solid, grounded in guitar and opting to have a rock vibe this time around. “Come and Revel” starts with a dancey bass line and a straightforward drumbeat falling somewhere in between a dance song the B-52’s would compose if David Byrne was on lead vocals. “Last Mortal Man” ends the album strongly. The chorus is anthemic and he plays to his strengths.
There are lots of good things about this album but I felt as if Eckardia was at his best with his dance-oriented tracks. While this album sometimes trips over itself with not knowing what it wants to be, when it does find itself it works quite well. Brad Eckardia first release is a solid debut album and even though it has some minor issues delivers a number of standout tracks that are worth checking out.
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