Hi 94 / Lo 74
|Volume 68, Issue 150,
Monday, June 23, 2003
Arts & Entertainment
Consolacion's debut 'Uncertain'
By Nathan Nix
One of the largest obstacles for any one writing music, whether in a band solo, is the difficulty of creating a unique voice.
When trying to find the perfect balance of mixing influences with unique characteristics, the line you walk is often a devilish tightrope which if approached cautiously can lead to success and distinction, but if taken carelessly can lead to derivative styling.
On his first EP, Uncertain Air, former UH student Jason Consolacion makes a valiant effort to set himself apart by fusing many styles into pop, yet falls just short of achieving this goal.
While the production on this independent release shimmers with purity and elevates Consolacionis strong, creamy vocals, the songwriting itself presents an artist still undergoing significant growth.
The first song on the five-song EP, "Stare (Yeah, Yeah)," falls somewhere in between John Mayer poppiness and smooth jazz thanks to a nice jazzy chord progression, but unfortunately ends up treading too deep in the stale waters of smooth jazz.
The same can be said for the last song, "1000000 Miles." While starting off with a fairly interesting intro and floating through a decent if not forgettable verse, the song takes a turn for the blandness of smooth jazz with its chorus.
A redeeming factor comes in the form of a gritty Wurlitzer electric piano, which runs through the song and serves to diminish the syrupy nature of the rest of the arrangement.
"Every Day Ainit Enough," is the strongest on the EP, all the while being the most stripped down.
While it could definitely be filed with the quirky acoustic pop of Jack Johnson and the aforementioned Mayer, Consolacionis stellar vocals make it a memorable experience worthy of a second listen.
Lyrically, lines such as "You can make me breakfast anytime/ scrambled eggs or frosted wheatsill do/ but before we go about our day/ I wanna crawl back into bed and make sweet love to you" struggle to hover somewhere between clever and corny, a problem that Johnson and Mayer struggle with also.
Unfortunately, "Sad Infatuation," Consolacionis strongest and most respectable song lyrically, lacks the raw emotional punch it needs to have the impact that it should, and as a result, seems to pass by without leaving a mark, though its bridge hints at what could be.
Going against the musicianis unspoken rule of never covering a Beatles song, Consolacion takes a stab at "Iive Just Seen A Face" and ends up with a decent, convincing version.
Uncertain Air showcases Consolacion as a very talented singer-songwriter who is moving closer everyday to establishing himself as a pop songwriter to be reckoned with, but is definitely still developing.
Ivory Tower Realizations
The verdict: The album falls flat, but does hint at better things
to come if Consolacion continues to develop his sound.
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