Monday, October 24, 2011

Chris Von Sneidern - Sight & Sound - 1993

The first solo album by ex-Flying Color singer/ songwriter Chris Von Sneidern is a terrific slice of '90s power pop, roots and ruefulness division. Von Sneidern's slightly rough voice isn't particularly suited to chipper material, and so the better tracks here are the darker ones like "Bad Black Lonesome" and the downright bleak closer "Never Again My Love." Von Sneidern is capable of his lighter moments as well, like the sweetly jangly "Annalisa" and the lighthearted homage "Hey Nino Tempo," but the best parts of this album, which features guest appearances by fellow Bay Area luminaries like John Wesley Harding and American Music Club guitarist Vudi, have an emotional depth and richness not often associated with the sometimes facile world of power pop. At 16 tracks, Sight & Sound is a little overstuffed and could use some pruning, but minimal use of the skip tracks buton will turn this CD into something special. -AMG