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CD REVIEW: J.J. Crowne - Songs of Innocence and Experience

By: Cyrus Rhodes

 

"Inspirational & uplifting"

- INDIE MUSIC DIGEST -

 

 

 

 

 

**********

 

Artist: J.J. Crowne

CD: Songs of Innocence and Experience

Label: Independent Artist

Website: http://www.facebook.com/JJCrowne

Genre: Rock, Power Pop,

Sounds Like: Seals and Crofts, Cat Stevens, Neil Diamond, Marc Cohen

Technical Grade: 7/10

Production/Musicianship Grade: 7/10
Commercial Value: 7/10
Overall Talent Level: 7/10
Songwriting Skills: 8/10
Performance Skill: 8/10
Best Songs: Only Time, Everything About You” Finally Your Turn

Weakness: More Instrumentation and musical variety


CD REVIEW:

 

Singer/Songwriter J.J. Crowne releases his latest CD entitled Songs of Innocence & Experience in 2011. J.J. Crowne hails from Miami Florida and is no stranger to the Recording Industry having produced and composed radio jingles, theatrical music & TV themes for Fox, PBS and Univision just to name a few. I might add J.J. Crowne played all the instruments on this CD & did all the production himself.

 

The CD kicks things off with “Only Time” an upbeat intro piece that serves up inviting guitar ambience, driving rock rhythm and well placed vocals & harmonies from Crowne. Track 2 “Another Day of Love” keeps things moving in the right direction with this powerful ballad complete with heart provoking vocals, powerful harmonies and inspirational lyrics and subject matter from Crowne. Track 3 “Everything about You” downshifts a bit with its methodical musical build that eventually lends itself into a passionate melody that flows & ebbs its way through to emotional fruition. As this CD slowly unfolds its obvious Crowne’s music has a lot to offer. It has all the trademarks of power pop/rock - very inspirational and uplifting nature. Sometimes passionate, sometimes up-beat, never to be underestimated. This CD flows extremely well song for song with musical textures reminiscent of Seals and Crofts, Marc Cohen, Neil Diamond & even classic Cat Stevens. Each piece is a short and sweet musical experience thus holding your attention span perfectly. The musical textures are pretty simplistic and for a 4 piece rock delivery holds its own remarkably well. The musicianship of J.J. Crowne is solid across the board & conservative. Crowne is not afraid to deliver the naked truth. Here you will touched by his vocal presence and overall message. These amazing ballads let it all hang out emotionally. Vocally Crowne’s voice holds his own extremely well within the confines of this catalogue. From passionate “Best of Intentions” to heartfelt “I can be the Wind” this CD has something for just about everyone. The CD ends with “Finally Your Turn” the perfect finale statement for a CD of this caliber.

 

I can’t help but wonder what some of these songs would sound like with even more musical variety layered within the music. Instruments such as multi-textured guitars, solo guitar, harmonica, mandolin, violin, viola, cello, piano, banjo, ukulele, more percussion, would bring a much needed musical dimension to the catalogue. As a result the production goes down a bit dry.

 

Overall this release from J.J. Crowne is an impressive musical statement. Its strong suit is his musical & emotional depth, songwriting craft and passionate vocal presence from J.J Crowne. Crowne touches all the emotions here not only with his writing but his vocal delivery as well. Pound for Pound Songs of Innocence and Experience is a very honest & uplifting statement that personifies the human experience with messages of wisdom, hope & life itself. Equally as impressive is the production virtuoso of J.J. Crowne. It’s a huge undertaking to write, play & produce all the music himself. My hats off to Crowne for taking all this on. I really admire artists out there who are themselves and just let the chips fall where they may. Praise goes out to the artist that can show us something real and genuine beneath their veil of vanity. J.J. Crowne is one of these artists.  

Cyrus Rhodes

 

Read the exclusive J.J. Crowne Interview