Review - Hope & Wait.

Artist: My Friend Steve

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Hope & Wait.
Label: Mammoth Records
Media: CD
Format: Album
WorkNameSort: Hope & Wait.

A little more than a year ago, Steve Burry was a gregarious Orlando rock & roll crooner looking for a band. Armed with a batch of good songs, he eventually hooked up with former members of Gainesville's Big White Undies and hit the studio as the latest signee of Mammoth Records. The result is a collection of midtempo, charismatic pop songs ready to join Counting Crows and The Wallflowers on adult contemporary radio.

Burry is a good songwriter with a powerful voice, but unfortunately producer Neal Avron arranges almost all the songs in the same bland formula: acoustic verse and chorus crescendos fleshed out by organ accompaniment and backing vocals. It all adds up to a musical sameness that the band often struggles to rise above. The album's highlights occur when the formula is broken, as on the creepy "Arnie" and the folksy shuffle of "Better Left Behind."

In addition, Mammoth went the extra mile and made the CD interactive, with excellent quality videos and bios for Burry's computer-friendly fans.

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