Album Reviews

Music You Don't Know You Like Yet

RON SEXSMITH

Long Player Late Bloomer

2011-03-09

A naturally sensitive and finely nuanced voice that is remotely reminiscent of James Taylor/Boz Scaggs (particularly “No Help At All”), an astute songwriting talent that includes (in different songs) echoes of Costello (“Love Shines”, “Nowadays”), The Beatles (“Every Time I Follow”), and Billy Joel (“Eye Candy”), Ron Sexsmith manages to conjure up his own distinct sound with a cd of memorable ditties, and often poignant lyrics. Produced by fellow Canadian Bob Rock (who produced for the likes of Metallica, Motley Crue, The Cult), this is his eleventh foray into the cd release arena. Rock's production, as usual, is edgy and very voluminous (think of an understated Phil Spector) - an example would be the intro to “Believe It When I See It”. Another cut, “The Reason Why” seems to closely emulate Bruce Hornsby's style, but with a better guitar riff. If you don't own any of his cds, this just might be the one to buy. (By the way,if you are mildly indifferent on first listen, listen to it again and by the third listen it will start to grow on you). I woke up this morning, and I just couldn't get “Get In Line” out of my head. His music has been covered by many artists – Sheryl Crow, Rod Stewart, Nick Lowe, and most recently Michael Buble. I would like to suggest to Michael Buble that “Miracle” might just be a perfect song to cover – given his singing style. Reviewers use words like sublime for albums like this. I'm not certain what that means exactly; but if it means it gets under your skin and sticks in your brain, then that's close enough. Some songs, though, I cannot seem to get my head around - they just seem to be out of place in his repertoire (“Michael And His Dad” comes to mind). , and “Late Bloomer” seems to wander aimlessly, and doesn't seem to fit in with the rest of the songs on this cd (except as the title song).. Just my two nickels. --------Nick

ARTIST BIO Ronald Eldon Sexsmith (born 8 January 1964) is a Canadian singer-songwriter from St. Catharines, Ontario, currently based in Toronto.[1] He started his own band when he was fourteen years old, and released the first recordings of his own material seven years later, in 1985. Some of the same artists who inspired Sexsmith—Paul McCartney, Elvis Costello, Ray Davies and John Hiatt—are now people whose praise he has won.[2] Sexsmith is the subject of a 2010 documentary, Love Shines. Early Career Sexsmith was seventeen when he started playing at a bar, the Lion's Tavern, in his hometown. He would gain a reputation as "The One-Man Jukebox" for his aptitude for playing requests. However, four to five years of this led him to play original songs and more obscure music his audience did not favour.[1] He decided to start writing songs after the birth of his first child, Christopher,[3] in 1985. He moved to Toronto, formed a band called The Uncool, and released a cassette, Out of the Duff. A year later, he released There’s a Way.[4][1] Next came the birth of his second child, Evelyn, in 1989. Meanwhile, he worked as a courier, and released Grand Opera Lane in 1991. On the strength of this album, and the attention garnered by the song "Speaking with the Angels", Sexsmith earned a contract which led to his self-titled album in 1995. The album received wider attention when it was praised by Elvis Costello, for whom Sexsmith later opened.[5]

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