You can listen to The American Dream by Vinnie Rose and call it rock, country and even soul but there is no denying that his songs are unapologetically pop. The production, lyrics and sounds shout out mainstream pop that you can imagine coming from the radio at two o'clock in the afternoon. Jaded hipsters need not apply.
Some of the reason this type of unapologetically poppy sound music gets a lot of hate is because the artist gets deemed as trying too hard. Trying too hard to get a name for themselves and adhering to a formula that has worked for others in the past. There are those artists you can sense are only in it to ”Make It” but then there are those you authentically like the sound of what we consider pop. I would ascertain that Rose falls into the latter category.
For one an earnest sincerity is apparent on the songs. It’s hard to pinpoint but something in the delivery makes you put aside your usual judgment about cookie-cutter pop and embrace what Rose has to offer. It also doesn’t hurt that the album contains a lot of variation, creative and technical skill and good singing from Rose. All that being said there were some songs which definitely resonated with me more and they were the ones that felt a bit off-kilter.
The album opens with “Scream” and this is definitely the most “single-worthy” track. It is upbeat, almost too catchy to the point you will be singing the chorus whether you like it or not. “Castin’ to the Wind” sounds like modern pop country while “My Bride” is the first song that introduces some melancholy into the mix.
The highlight at least for me was “Beautiful.” It was unlike anything else on the album. I really thought Rose did a stellar job on the vocals. He sounds stoic yet serene. The music is atmospheric and features some great guitar work. The end of the song even has an experimental breakdown section. I’m not sure what inspired this song but I hope to hear more like it in the future.
As the album begins to seep in you realize it does feel uneven. Playing “American Dream,” “Scream” and “Beautiful” in succession sound disparate. Rose is certainly a talent but still may have some honing of his craft to if he wants to build an audience because his eclectic style may ostracize certain listeners.
Overall American Dream is a solid effort that feels a little unfocused.
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