In 2010 Jason Kaminski was in an alternative rock band called Stalemate. For whatever reason he wanted to branch out and establish himself as a solo artist. He initially released chance encounter back in early 2011 and just recently released his sophomore effort entitled Odd, Peculiar Brain. His music isn’t particularly ground breaking as he writes singer/songwriter folk music that fans of Elliott Smith, Bright Eyes or The Shins will easily enjoy. The songwriting on these 12 songs is exceptional. His lyrics are heartfelt and original while his melodies are warm and inviting. The songs are open and contain instruments such as acoustic guitar (the staple), piano, organ and subdued percussion. He does a good job at creating a variety of emotions within the songs even though the overall theme veers towards melancholy.
The first song entitled “The Orchid & the Hornet” is one of the catchiest songs on the album. His voice feels carefree and bursts with exuberance as the music itself is equally as fun to listen to. The second song entitled “So Afraid” contains an acoustic guitar, organ and his voice. It’s a melancholy, folk song that is a bit of a departure from the first song. “A Guide for Living” sounds like it could be a B-side on Bright Eyes’ I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning because of the country feel and lyrics. The sparsest song yet on the album is “Loner” which is nothing more than his guitar and voice. Perfectly fine by me as I thought it was one of the strongest songs on the album. “Peace of Mind” is an uplifting song that combines some intricate guitar and arguably the best vocal performance on the album. “Waltz” is exactly what you would expect as it sounds like a waltz although it drips with emotionally fueled vocal lyrics and heart that sometimes are not present with this type of music. Being a sucker for banjo I thoroughly enjoyed the last song on the album called “White Picket Fences.”
Quite simply put Kaminski created a batch of 12 songs that are easy to like and hard to find fault with. They have everything you could want in a song, such as good lyrics and sincere emotion and they leave you thoroughly satisfied.
Check out his new album.
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