Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Review: Andy Pratt “Andy Pratt Loves You”

Singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Andy Pratt has been on his roller coaster ride through the music business since the 70s, when he scored his commercial hit “Avenging Annie”. While many may remember him as the one-hit wonder, he is still going strong with his wild, reverse Mohawk flapping around him on each side as he pounds the keyboard. Many folks don’t realize he’s cranked out over 20 albums through the years. His latest record is simply called “Andy Pratt Loves You”, and it features a dozen new tracks for fans of this veteran musician.

Two key things about Andy Pratt: 1) his voice takes a little getting used to (kind of like Bee Gees meets Gilbert O’Sullivan), and 2) his songs are upbeat and positive. Generally his songs are quite catchy and well produced with a pleasant blend of acoustic and electric guitars, solid rhythms, and occasional piano/keys. He still engages in some musical experimentation, recalling his early work decades ago. For example, he'll toss in some spoken words or unleash his crazy falsetto - sometimes it is hard to tell if Pratt is serious or joking. His songs sound rooted in 70s pop melodies, but his writing really is timeless.

“Andy Pratt Loves You” has a perfect balance of upbeat, slow, and midtempo pop rockers. The record kicks off with “It’s Not The End Of The World”, with a gorgeous piano melody - it reminds me a bit of New Radicals. “Take It All Away” is slower, but the breezy atmosphere makes this one too easy on the ears to resist. “Home Of The Brave” sounds like something off a Five For Fighting record. Things cool off for a while, but then his wicked falsetto will wake you up for “Sing”. I’m on the fence about this one – pretty good melody, but that falsetto rubs me the wrong way. Other highlights include “I’m All Alone” and “I Don’t Care Anymore”.

As Pratt has said, “I hate ugly music”. There’s nothing ugly about the tunes gracing his latest record, so try developing an acquired taste for this talent.

iPOD-worthy: 1, 2, 3, 9, 11

Andy Pratt on MySpace. Official site.

Listen to “It’s Not The End Of The World”