Clay Anderson is Texas native singer/songwriter who has playing guitar and writing music for thirteen years. He released Clay Anderson and Wheeltapper which is an eleven-song album that sticks to a guitar and vocals. There is a second guitar that pop ups now and then.
As for as the recording goes it sounded to my ears like a basic DIY home recording. The recordings are raw and you can tell it doesn’t have some of the extra mojo you can get from a professional studio. There are some things I really liked about this album and other things that which make the experience of listening to the eleven tracks a bit rough.
You could tell me that my favorite artist in the world was releasing an album of guitar and vocals and I would still say that's a tall order to keep my attention. To Anderson’s credit he tries to mix it up with guitar tones but I still found myself yearning for other elements in these songs especially when he stuck to basics that you would be greeted to by any decent musician doing an open mic.
His songwriting is solid throughout the album. There were certain songs which I felt fared better than others. One of his best songs is the opener “Circle Bar.” It’s one of his best vocal performances and the guitar riff was also quite enjoyable. After this song I was hoping that he would introduce some percussion into some of the songs because I felt an energy that was hiding beneath this song.
The album goes in the opposite direction with “Deuteronomy 19:21” where the vocal production isn’t equal to the first song. It’s still a solid song and I appreciated his vocal performance. There are some enjoyable songs as the album progresses such as “Shivarees” and “Mojo Workin Blues.” A song like “Nip and Tuck” is played like it wants to rocks out.
Clay Anderson and Wheeltapper is a mixed album in many ways. It offers different styles from blues to folk with varying degrees of production quality. Although some of this material felt a lot more apt for a full band than solo there were still some inspired moments.
This album is far from perfect and would have benefited from brevity with this sparse presentation but I can still appreciate a talented songwriter who has an aesthetically pleasing voice.
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