Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

Head-Boppin' Toe-Tappin' Rock/Pop

March 2, 2009

Brett Harris’ second EP Side Two was released in October as a follow-up to Yesterday’s News. The five-track EP showcases a singer/songwriter with a pop sensibility coming into his own.

“Not Coming Back” is a catchy pop tune with Harris’ voice wavering over upbeat guitar licks. Pop turns rock on the next track: “Haughty Judge Naughty” begins with a sparse guitar in a Red Hot Chili Peppers kind of way. Harris’ gravely voice drives the song to the finish, which features a sweet electric guitar solo. “Red Dress” has a get-up-and-shake-it-like-it’s-1987 feel. Except not in a good way; more in a I-spilled-blue-eye-shadow-on-my-yellow-spandex kind of way. It tries too hard.  The electric guitar solo at the end makes it a little better, but personally I would prefer to hit the next button.

“Crashing Down” sports a bare piano sound paired with Harris’ matter-of-fact voice. The vamping is reminiscent of Joe Purdy’s “You Don’t Like Me Anyway,” bare and pretty.

Overall, it’s clear Brett Harris is a talent; “Not Coming Back” and “Crashing Down” are prime examples of his ability. With the exception of “Red Dress,” I was impressed. With a varied sound and strong musical ability, Brett Harris deserves your ear. And if you were a fan of the 80s, all the better.

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Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of bands that are trying to make the next step in their careers.

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