EP REVIEW: J.J. Crowne - Another Day of Love
By: Cyrus Rhodes
"messages of hope"
- INDIE MUSIC DIGEST-
Artist: J.J. Crowne
EP: Another Day of Love
Label: Independent Artist
Genre: Classic Rock, Pop Rock
Sounds Like: Seals and Crofts, The Beatles, Elvis Costello, Bread
Technical Grade: 8/10
Weakness: Lack of Vocal Emotion and Risk Taking, Over Singing, EP Release
Miami based Singer/Songwriter J.J. Crowne just released hi latest 5 song EP called Another day of Love. J.J. is no stranger to the music business having spent numerous years writing professionally placing for numerous Film, TV and Commercial productions. Now J.J. Is back with 5 brand new tracks released in 2012. Reading from his bio: All 5 songs on this EP will draw on the emotions with the heartfelt storytelling that is Crowne’s. The title song, depicted so well on the cover, “Another Day of Love,” begs to ask the question – as one opens the morning paper, reads of the homeless, the crime, the wars – does one feel love –or indifference? In the style of Dylan, it’s a relevant story that Crowne’s song uses to draw you in to the emotion of the times. Well Played.
The EP kicks things off with the title track “Another Day of Love” a rock steady intro piece that serves up driving rock rhythm, against infectious vocal vibe with catchy melody from Crowne. Track 2 "Only Time” keeps things moving with methodical guitar driven intro hypnotic melody painted against impressive guitar ambience and heartfelt vocal performance from Crowne. This coupled with mesmerizing lyrical content makes for a very interesting musical statement. Track 3 “Best of Intentions” is a track that was on his pervious CD. This version is more earthy serving up a comforting ditty flows and ebbs its way through to emotional fruition with hypnotic groove and a grand slam chorus. As the EP slowly unfolds I can hear many different musical soundscapes reminiscent of such classic acts such as Beatles, The Byrds, Seals and Crofts, Elvis Costello, and even R.E.M. Right from the start you will notice rich musical textures overflowing everywhere, full of passion, variety and strong melodic structure. The songs themselves are addictive, and packed full of entertaining lyrical content and subject matter that simply cannot be faked. The music itself is an impressive/catchy blend of classic rock, alternative rock with just a dash of 70’s psychedelic pop thrown in. Along the way besides the typical 4 piece standard you will notice well placed vocal harmonies, saxophone, organ, impressive solo guitar, well placed harmonies all built on a solid low end rhythm section foundation. Crowne makes no attempt at sugar coating the truth via his lyrics and music, instead he lets it all hang out with reckless abandon and trippy/happy lamentation via the songwriting craft. The vocals from Crowne works well within the confines of this upbeat/melodic catalogue. No doubt Crowne showcases impressive musicianship and production virtuoso - this coupled with experience makes for a deadly combination no doubt. What I like most about J;J. Crowne is how his songs really make the connection. From upbeat this EP has something for just about everyone. To my personal favorite “Toy Soldiers” to ‘She and He” the perfect finale statement for an EP of this caliber – this CD has something for just about everyone.
J.J. Crowne pretty much plays it safe vocally throughout the CD avoiding any serious risks that would showcase a world class vocal ability. If I could say anything to J.J. right now - don’t be afraid to step outside the comfort zone and spike the punch by taking more vocal risks and showcasing raw emotions throughout your songs. This especially applies to some of the finale moments where an emotionally charged vocal finale is called for. No doubt Grammy Winners are masters at delivering vocal performances that are to say the least - unforgettable. If J.J. can improve some of the aforementioned issues I think he will discover it can be like capturing lighting in a bottle. I also feel J.J. is slightly guilty of over-singing some of his songs. I also typically deduct 1 star for EP releases, as the full length release is the more complete snapshot of an artist at any given time.
This latest 5 song EP from J.J Crowne entitled Another Day of Love is an impressive musical production from start to finish. It’s strong suit – the amazing melodic, pop songwriting virtuoso of J.J Crowne who provide powerful messages of hope via his amazing music. The music is clean, goes down smooth, and is full of rich vocal melody The messages are passionate, honest, and amazingly witty - all from a passionate perspective. 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 those artists/bands.