Checking out I Got Music: Volume 2
A track-by-track review
This week, Charleston Sound releases a new 13-song compilation titled I Got Music: Volume 2. The homegrown disc features top-quality production of songs by 13 local artists. Here's a track-by-track rundown of the compilation:
1. Dan Wright & The New Beat — "Hard Road"
Intensely funky stuff from the newly established blues-rock trio, replete with additional Hammond B3 and drummer Quentin Ravenel's peppery snare and cymbal work. Super tight and mighty soulful. Wright's hearty howl has a hint of Rod Stewart during his stint with The Faces.
2. Mary's Got a Band — "Polka Dot Tears"
Organic, lush, and dripping with twangy melodies, this one's a breezy, atmospheric Southern-fried pop tune with strong harmonies supporting Mary Gilmore's lead vocals.
3. Farpoint — "Another Day"
Complex/flashy modern alt-rock with a high-tech foundation. This optimistic number from the Sumter-based six-piece features some busy instrumentation and an amusingly fuzzy-toned guitar solo.
4. Plainfield — "Sunny Daze"
A harmony-laden, mid-tempo rocker from the popular Charleston combo (previously known as The Plainfield Project), featuring a rich delivery from lead singer Ben Fagan and tasteful piano embellishment from keyboardist Ross Bogan. Strummy, dynamic, and groovy.
5. Tim Hodson — "Tree That Found the Ground"
Hodson's Clapton-esque electric guitar style and tone and his rich singing propel this bluesy groove-rock anthem. Sounds like a well-behaved, somewhat drowsy Allman Bros. session.
6. Megan Jean & The Klay Family Band — "Big Bad Wolf"
Stylistically, this mysterious orch-pop tune from singer Megan Jean and bassist Byrne Klay stands out as a beautifully clangy foot-stomper. Noisy tambourine, bowed upright bass, distant banjo sounds, booming stomp boxes ... it's a unique mix.
7. Sol Driven Train — "My Corolla"
The veteran local ensemble avoids ripping of The Knack's "My Sharona" and aims for a more syncopated, Latin-tinged, Santana-like style on this fun, wacky ode to a frustratingly lovable old Toyota. The reverby guitar solo is a highlight.
8. Fagan Brothers — "Queen on King"
Plainfield frontman Ben Fagan, his guitar-playing brother Chis Fagan, and a handful of guest players deliver a Charleston-centric funk-rock track celebrating some college-aged hottie on lower King Street.
9. Firework Show — "Not So Blue"
Last year's comp featured this indefatigable rock band's oddball art-rock song "Echoes." This year's hippie-friendly, organ-heavy track comes across with considerably more straight-ahead soul-rock style (think Dr. John meets War and Rufus Thomas with a hint of Meters).
10. Skye Paige & The Original Recipe — "Mean Old Man"
Heavy-duty twang-punk from Paige and some pals from The Defilers and BBQ Bros. Powered by distorted slide guitar, this track is a stand-out from her new release, Whole Lotta Woman.
11. JamiSun — "Namaste"
Acoustic balladry with echoes of electric guitar in the background. Busy local singer/guitarist Jamisun Hodge (a.k.a. JamiSun) stretches his vocal range to higher tones than expected on this melancholy track.
12. Blue — "Pieces"
An overly busy rhythm section and lead guitarist add too much flare to this Matchbox 20-like groove-pop tune. Featuring members of the Big Hit & The Baby Kit.
13. Man on Fire — "Higher Than Mountains"
With its futuristic synch sounds and sophisticated riffs and fill, Charleston Sound owner/engineer Jeff Hodges' own modern prog-rock band (featuring musicians from Charleston and Atlanta) stands as a slick, dramatic, synth-heavy closer.