Brandon Jenner – Oversized Soul – EP
Opening with footsteps akin to Bobby Vee’s “Walkin’ With My Angel,” you can’t slight an artist for using a good idea. L.A. singer-songwriter Brandon Jenner has a good voice & gets off to a good start with his own footsteps on “Till The Day We Die,” which is filled with atmosphere & mood. His voice is not deep in country dirt, but he has a savvy way of bringing out the leather.
With a pleasant enough voice & some enriched tunes, well-recorded & performed it’s a shame Mr. Jenner feels it’s necessary to use foul language to get his message across (“I’m Over Who You Think You Are”). First, the arrogant obnoxious title (which I like) alone should drive home the power of his message to his intended love without the support of the objectionable words. Don’t cheapen it. The colorful language doesn’t toughen up the sound or vilify it.
I want to hear an artist like Jenner get creative & not resort to what an audience expects. To my ears, it minimizes the artistry of his music. Oh, he said “fuckin’” & “shit” everyone applaud & shouts.
With “Vibrations,” the music’s cool & driving but the words are cliché-enriched bombastic entertainment. OK, we need this sometimes since we like to dance & get wild. On stage, dancing with smoke & lasers works quite convincingly. There’s no denying the arrangement of the song is well thought out. But lyrics like “I get high on your good vibrations,” – didn’t the Beach Boys sing lines like this in their classic song “Good Vibrations” back in 1966?
“Lonely Road,” brings Jenner back to earth. His fine vocals are on full display with sincerity. This is his forte. This is Brandon Jenner. The music is bracing, the technique is chiseled out with substantial feeling.
The 6-song Oversized Soul (Drops Sept 2-Nettwerk) is solid songs performed with efficiency. “One of a Kind,” follows a method but Jenner has the right voice for such a song. He’s a well-articulated singer – no issues understanding what he’s saying in his ballads & mid-tempo songs. This particular song has excellent lyrics & a good groove.
Brandon impresses with a standard blues-rock on a cover of Willie Dixon’s classic “Can’t Judge a Book By Looking at the Cover.” The fiery harmonica adds to the showcase. Brandon’s energetic vocalizations are good. He has a great bluesy vocal, a little less raw than the late Long John Baldry’s well-known cover. But Jenner’s effort is admirable. This may be more where he should be than “Vibrations.”
Brandon needs to find his niche, stay with it & don’t veer too far from base too often. He’s a viable, likable artist. Color image from Nettwerk & with guitar by Cassy White. CD @ https://www.brandonjennermusic.com/
Check out our interview with Brandon here: Interview: Brandon Jenner Hunts for Vibes on “Oversized Soul”