Andrew Collberg writes the kind of pop songs I wish were more prevalent among American society instead of the emotionless, over-produced, American Idol contestant type pop that a vast majority of the population has become accustomed to. On his full-length Mind Hits Collberg writes songs that have pop sensibilities that align with classic bands like The Beatles as well as contemporaries like The Shins. There is a vintage aesthetic that improves the likability to the tracks. This is achieved through his voice and instrumentation choices but also, in my opinion, it probably has to do with the fact that the record was recorded and mixed to tape. There is an inherent warmth to the recording and a natural compression that makes the songs feel glued together.
Right off the bat Collberg hits it out of the park with “Rich.” The song is ridiculously infectious and is only enhanced by the minor but effective nuances Collberg plants within his songs. Whether it’s the background vocal harmonies or manipulated guitar the subtleties make all the difference. Collberg has a very attractive voice that aligns very well with pop music. It’s hard to pinpoint but there is a natural sounding timbre to his voice that resonated with me.
Collberg put together a number of noteworthy moments on “Take A Look Around” while “Pepper” has arguably the catchiest vocal melody on the album. “Stars On” bursts with unrestricted energy that will put the most frown-worthy of folks in a good mood. He sings “Its all down from here” but for some reason I don't believe him.
The album ends with the nostalgic “Hit The Gas,” which in the end feels more triumphant than reflective. There is a barrage of different instrumentation. Drums crash, guitars wail, and sirens scream. It starts to fall apart, unravel and dissipate before coming to a close.
Collberg does so many things right on this album; everything from the production, to the songwriting, to the flow comes together in an artistic statement that any one with a decent taste in music will enjoy.
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