Home-recorded albums and one-man bands are surely on the rise in today’s technology-driven music industry, and Spencer Roberts, a lifelong musician from the mountains of Virginia, is no different. His album Day Dreaming is a laid back approach to music, and many of the songs are reminiscent of slow days at the beach.
“Waiting On Nothing” starts off the album with a gradually building dynamic led by Spencer’s falsetto and a lightly strummed guitar. As the song develops and more forceful strums and percussion take the energy to a higher level, Spencer’s voice anchors the track down to earth, and his relaxed style is extremely infectious. The song “Golden Days” is similarly designed, and its swaying three-four rhythm swings unhurried above rich, reverb-laden vocals, making for one of the best songs on the entire record.
Spencer’s downtempo songwriting style continues through “So Long I’m Leaving” and “Promenade,” a pulsing ballad with hints of blues infused into melodic fingerpicking and harmonies. A throbbing guitar riff opens the title track of the record “Day Dreaming” the most upbeat song yet. As Spencer sings out his lyrics, rhythmic drumbeats and sliding guitar melodies back him up.
The characteristic leisurely pace returns in “By The Sea” along with slow percussion, softly strummed guitars and calm vocals induce a dreamy, sleepy state upon the listener. This song in particular is perfect for an afternoon rest or relaxation by the sea (see song title). The record comes to an end with “Waxed” a short instrumental song with a plodding beat and occasional wordless vocals. This lighthearted track does more than would be thought possible in contributing to the overall sound of the album.
As a whole, Day Dreaming is a solid release in which Spencer Roberts defies genre boundaries while protecting his own style and form. While not bursting with “in your face” energy, the subtleties and nuances within the tracks make this album well worth the listen.
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