CD REVIEW: Timeless Soul by Jeremy Poland and Lantz Dale

The second album from Jeremy Poland pairs him with producer/songwriter Lantz Dale, the man who steered production duties for Poland’s debut Southbound Heart, and eschewing electric guitar pop rock in favor of an acoustic approach. The seven songs included on Timeless Soul rock, however, with every bit as much conviction as anything on Poland’s debut even if they fail to occupy the same space on the sonic register and sound full of effortless melodies. Poland’s vocals dominate most of the songwriting, but effectively work Dale’s vocals into the mix throughout the release. The pop song aspects of the album are quite strong with big choruses pushing a lot of the material even further into the stratosphere. Poland and Dale’s vastly different musical backgrounds come together quite nicely, one informing the other, and result in one of the year’s true under the radar gems.

“All Yours Now” begins on a slightly elegiac note before shifting into a brighter, more uptempo chorus. The opener is an excellent illustration of how Timeless Soul brings together the singer/songwriter qualities of these performers with their inclinations towards memorable pop melodies. The second track, “In The Light”, is a much more hushed affair for the bulk of its duration, but there is a compelling second half when the arrangement and instrumentation open up in an impressive way that will linger in listener’s memories long after the final notes have faded away. “All Over Again” has a clipped, noteworthy groove the instrumentation ably matches and the tempo gives the vocals a great foundation to move across. It has an almost reggae-ish quality without ever giving itself over completely to that style. The aforementioned vocals seem to have a delightful time singing along with this track and the playfulness never wavers.

“I’m a Wreck” is, arguably, the best song on Timeless Soul. The lyrics have a forthright quality that the other songs lack with short, practically abbreviated lines expressing the singer’s situation with unusual clarity. The chorus is quite a contrast with the lyrics; the gorgeously precise vocal harmonies certainly don’t suggest someone in such distress but, interpreted in a different way, it’s a masterful stroke. “Sunday Afternoon” has a much more pensive mood than the other songs, but the final quarter of the track finds Poland and Dale shifting things into a higher, more uptempo gear. It’s one of the best lyrics on the album as well. The title song closes the release and it competes with the earlier “I’m a Wreck” in terms of quality. This is a wildly inventive musical piece that doesn’t rely a single motif to get itself over with listeners and has deeper melodic complexity that some of Timeless Soul’s more straightforward tunes. The vocals have a much different tenor than they do elsewhere in this collection and experience a wider range of emotion. Whether this proves to be a musical vision either man continues pursuing, Timeless Soul is a worthy entry to both artists burgeoning careers and, at very least, will cause them to approach any new direction they may take informed by this experience.


by Lydia Hillenburg

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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