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Non-Prog CD Reviews

The Livesays

Not What I Bargained For

Review by Gary Hill

I've reviewed a couple other sets from this act in the past. They consistently produce catchy music with a lot of old-school sound in the mix. I'd say that this is perhaps more along the lines of things like Bruce Springsteen and Bryan Adams than some of the previous sets. It's a little meatier with a little less emphasis on the pop end of the spectrum. It also might be the most consistent release I've reviewed from this group.

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Track by Track Review
Two Sides
There is a real 70s rock groove to this. I'm reminded of Bruce Springsteen to a large degree.
One More Chance
A cool rocker, I like this one a lot. It's got a dropped back, folky kind of movement to temper that more rocking chorus section.
What I Bargained For
I can make out both The Beatles and Roy Orbison on this tune. It's another classy cut.
Drunkard’s Lament
There is a bluesy Southern rock angle to this. Yet I'm also reminded of Bryan Adams a little. That's tempered with some Allman Brothers angles.
Show A Little Honesty
Starting on piano, this is bluesy ballad that really has some particularly expressive guitar soloing later.
Hold Me
This is a hard rocking number with a real 50s sound on display. I'm again reminded of Orbison.
In A Small Town
With an arrangement built around acoustic guitar and other instrumentation serving to augment it, this is another ballad. There is a lot of emotion in the delivery. My one complaint on this song is that it seems to go on a bit long. 
If I Should Ever Fall Behind
Coming in mellower and more balladic, this works out to a soulful, gospel music inspired bluesy mid-tempo song structure.
In Troubled Times
I dig the slide guitar that dances around on this thing. The tune has more of a blues rock approach. It seems to live in the middle ground between ballad and rocker.
Better Angels
A classy rocking sound is on the menu here. This is solid, but not a standout.
Can’t Stop The Taking
Here we get another evocative ballad. I'm again reminded of Bryan Adams on this number. 
Crazy, Isn’t It?
Starting with piano this works out to a classy melodic rock groove from there. I'm reminded a little of The Beatles on this, but that Bryan Adams thing is present, too. Perhaps there is a little Rod Stewart in the mix, too. This is one of the most effective pieces here, making it a great choice for closer.
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