Reed Waddle – Piece By Piece (CD)

“The Beast Within” will be Reed Waddle’s claim to fame. The first single off of his new album “Piece By Piece”, the track has a timeless quality to it given by the honest and smooth vocals of Waddle. The slight hint of electronic fuzz that plays at the corner of the track links the alt-rock of Waddle to storied acts like the Red Hot Valentines and Desert City Soundtrack. This strain of the band’s sound is complemented further by an easily-approachable indie rock style that has influences drawn from artists such as Ben Harper and even Paul Simon.

The Simon influence can be heard easier if individuals tune in to “Velveteen Skies”, which links the alternative/indie style of “The Beast Within” with an earlier style that ranges from Neil Young to Dave Matthews Band and Randy Newman all the way out to the Counting Crows. Despite this diverse array of influences, listeners are able to identify with Waddle’s vocals and pick out all the nuances that makes “Piece By Piece” such a lasting album. Aside from the aural aesthetics put forth by Waddle and his band on “Piece By Piece”, listeners would do well to dissect the lyrics on tracks like “Goodnight Los Angeles” (which contains a ringing endorsement for Reed Waddle through a writing credit that contains John Oates).

These lyrics show the dual face of living in Los Angeles; “It’s the city of angels but don’t believe it / You take your time but it can’t touch those dreams”; there is a lot to be gained, but one can just lose as much. Where Waddle comes forth with a narrative thread through all of the tracks on “Piece By Piece”, he simply does not give individuals a play by play of what is happening. Rather, Waddle creates lyrics that are more poetic and more emotional than practically any other act playing right now. In a period of pop stars devoid of any emotion, the soulful lyrics of Waddle shine through as a bright spot on a barren plain. By all means, check out Reed Waddle as he and his band plays through the United States in support of the release of “Piece By Piece” this summer and fall, with new dates being added at a regular clip, Waddle should make it to a city near you sooner rather than later.

Top Tracks: Natural Elevation, Help Yourself

Rating: 8.2/10

Reed Waddle – Piece By Piece / 2008 Self / / /

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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