Red Line Roots reviews "Jay Psaros"
Thank you to Brian Carol of Red Line Roots for the kind words on "Jay Psaros!" This record has been a labor of love and I am so grateful that people have been taking the time to show it some love!
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You know when you are listening to a singer-songwriter and you find yourself mumbling “this just isn’t fair, this person is just too good”. That’s what I tend to mumble (perhaps with a 4 letter word or two) everytime I hear Jay Psaros sing. The dude just has a voice that melts hearts and is like if velvet and butter had a baby on your ears…smooth as silk. Then, the dude plays guitar or launches into his instrumental track “Tripping and Running” and you are just like “oh COME ON!”.
Psaros is one of those few that is a phenomenal, yet incredibly humble talent. Catchy writing, incredibly impressive musicianship, and that damn velvety soft croon that gives me the shivers every time.
The songwriter has a great collection of albums and singles, but his latest, a self titled 10 track album, has the musician exploring all sorts of influences and genres in a full, warm, and clean arrangement.
The record kicks in with Young Man, eliciting those damn shivers as he sings I thought that I was different and I thought that I was tough, And I thought that I was strong but I wasn’t strong enough. I find it so impactful when a songwriter can say so much with simple phrasings and words. There is an implicit earnestness to how Psaros presents himself and his music. You get the feeling that he is feeling all the words coming out of his mouth. Simplicity, but never compromising.
The second track Downtime takes on an island reggae vibe, but not quite the Marley persuasion. Riddled with rich harmonies it takes on a much more mainstream kind of a feel and respect to it. Jay has an uncanny way of blending sounds and styles to craft something that is very much his own, defined and held together by his voice at the nucleus of it all.
The records closer is atmospheric and moody, but not in a dark or foreboding kind of a way. It has heart and regret and reflection. Underneath the Moon is painted by a tremolo and reverberating guitar line that lines the songwriter’s narrative, breaking into each part in a manner that holds you…and still man, that voice. The song builds tension until it finally bursts open into a string arrangement that is beautiful and moving. The perfection accoutrement to the song before ending with a final pluck of Jay’s acoustic guitar, sending us off from the album.
The music here on the new record is full and robust. Smart choices in guitar and effects. Never adding too much, just adding enough, to accompany but never overwhelm the basic mechanics and purpose of the song. That is something I love so much about Jay’s work, it can be just as impactful on a full length, full band record or him standing alone in a dive bar with an acoustic guitar. The musician bleeds versatility and heart and that is evident here in his latest effort.
You can order ‘Jay Psaros’ by Jay Psaros online now at: http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/jaypsaros