It’s been at least three years since I last went on vacation. I mean a real vacation where I leave the city for more than a day or two. I do have one planned for next year though, in Florida, on a beach in March when there are no stupid hurricanes to spoil my time tanning and drinking and not getting eaten by sharks. That’s the plan anyway. I can tell you though what I am not going to do on my vacation and that is work. I’m not going to write a damn thing except my name on a dotted line.
That’s because I’m not a man like the bi-coastal singer/songwriter Johnny Walter who under his moniker Walty recorded his most recent effort, EP while on vacation back in his old stomping grounds of Oakland.
Walter wrote the vocals and played most of the instruments himself: bass, guitars and electric piano, and got a little help from friends Darren Womack who played drums and Eli Nelson who chimed in on the synths. There are a few different musical styles going on on EP.
The opening tune “I'm in Love with Everything” is a sort of psychedelic blues rocker that reminded me a bit of Black Rebel Motorcycle’s early stuff. Next on the super poppy and disco-centric “Chinese Disco” I got a Of Montreal vibe, in that the song is both catchy and kitschy on purpose. Anyways it worked for me.
Walter seems most at home in the realm of bildungsroman pop-song writing which he cements his penchant for on the happy-go-lucky rocker “Old Friend,” and then again with a bit more of a serious edge to attached on “Only One.” The closer “Underground” leans back to that trippy style of classical bouncy rock shot through with a little bit of glam to give it some sheen.
For an EP of five songs that were recorded during a week of vacation while visiting some old friends, Walty’s EP is definitely worth a your travel time.
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