Russ Glenn, Brand New World

russglenn_album.jpgWhen I first popped in Russ Glenn’s, A Brand New Earth, I was willing to give it a chance.   Sure it sounds like your average frat boy with a guitar tearing up the scene at the local college bookstore, but hey we have all sat around the fire singing along to Jack Johnson riffs.   It is a hard album to sell though.   Unlike the John Mayers and Ben Harpers of the world, Russ Glenn is choppy and mechanical.   Unfortunately, his rigidity spills over into his voice that is too dramatic, too vibrating, too intended.   Like watching your girlfriend taking an acting class, however, I still secretly cheered Russ on.   His chords are solid.     His enthusiasm is commendable.   This, of course, was before the tragedy of this album, Russ Glenn’s cover of Jane Says.     Albeit a bold move, I have to say it was not a wise choice.   Singing a song about a prostitute like its a summer camp jamboree is just distasteful.   This tragedy is then followed by yet another cover.   This time he takes on the prince of 60s East Village heroine angst, Lou Reed and his classic Sweet Jane and again plants it cheerfully into the weekend retreat’s sound system.   Please understand paying tribute through a cover is always a honoring gesture, but disregarding the painful truths behind the lyrics and the music with hand holding bellows is just a not right.   Already struggling, Russ Glenn managed to do what few camp fire rockers have been able to do, distinguish themselves from the crowd, much to the dismay of this listener, and he did it in two songs.
Review By: W. R. Eilers

[Rating: 2/5]

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