Bargain Music – American Born (CD)

The entire look of the CD seems to scream 1974 instead of the current time, and when individuals put the CD into their player and play the disc’s first track “American Born”, the impression is enforced. In a sense, Bargain Music play a style of music that blends together that of 4 Non Blondes with protest musicians like Phil Ochs and Pete Seeger. The vocals are easy to follow along with, and individuals will be floored with the depth that Bargain Music imbues into these tracks. A smart move of Bargain Music’s early on the disc has to be the creation of two songs in the title track and “Falling” that together barely break the three minute mark.

This is a move designed to ease listeners into the dominant paradigm of Bargain Music, and by the time the first normal-length track (“Billy”) starts, individuals know a little what to expect from the band. Where there have been a bunch of acts in the last five to ten years that do the whole “individual with a guitar” thing, Bargain Music uses an earlier tradition in the creation of the tracks on “American Born”. A track like “Billy’ has the same style of lyrical expression as what one would normally expect from individuals like Warren Zevon. This is not to say that all the tracks on “American Born” re serious, as a song like “Billy” has a humorous twist, but that most of the songs on the album are serious and somber, allowing individuals to identify with what is being sung.

There is a high amount of cohesion between the tracks on “American Born”, to the degree that by the end of the disc, individuals know exactly what to expect from Bargain Music. The disc is short enough that individuals will not feel that the cohesion enjoyed on the disc will become a noose around Bargain Music’s neck, and this allows Bargain Music to have a large group to pander to by the time that their next album comes out. Bargain Music is only rightfully titled due to the fact that few instruments create all the music that is present on this album. The band’s name does not mean that they take any shortcuts, and should never mean that the band is leeching off other styles. Bargain Music is their own act, and they play music that a wide swath of listeners will dig.

Top Tracks: Falling, Drinking With Trey

Rating: 6.0/10


Bargain Music – American Born / 2006 Cornerstone R.A.S. / 11 Tracks / / / Reviewed 13 October 2006

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