The Pinder Brothers
First Appeared in The Music Box, May 2010, Volume 17, #5
Written by John Metzger
Fri May 28, 2010, 06:30 AM CDT
For all of its sparkle and polish, Jupiter Falls was, in retrospect, merely a tentative foray into the music business for The Pinder Brothers. Released independently, the album gave Michael Lee and Matthew Pinder, the sons of Moody Blues legend Mike Pinder, an opportunity to follow their unified, creative muse and progress at their own pace without the pressure that a major label likely would have placed upon them. After hearing the album, it immediately was clear that they were still in the very early stages of finding their collective voice. This is, of course, an important step in establishing a long and prosperous career, though it also is a concept that, more often than not, is lost in the fast-paced, modern world of instant but ultimately disposable singles and, for that matter, artists.
The attention that The Pinder Brothers received for Jupiter Falls was modest at best. Yet, when combined with the support of their family, friends, and an expanding base of fans, it was enough to bolster the duo’s confidence and fuel the growth that they demonstrate throughout their sophomore set Ordinary Man. Working with producer Tony Clarke, while utilizing the same blueprint that they employed on their debut, The Pinder Brothers largely have updated the pop-rock fare of The Beatles and The Moody Blues by enveloping it within the sorts of production styles that were typical during the 1980s and 1990s. Nevertheless, the siblings exhibit levels of attitude and swagger that make their material on Ordinary Man sound more convincing than the tracks that filled its predecessor.
As was the case with Jupiter Falls, there is some inconsistency that continues to nag at Ordinary Man. There’s nothing inherently wrong with the Matthew Sweet-inspired power pop of Dear Diane or the gentle ballad Oh Woman, but they are so tightly tied to what is acceptable for contemporary rock that they sound utterly generic. By contrast, the bubbly ebullience of Holiday would fit neatly alongside the best moments from Squeeze, while Inside Me delightfully bends shades of The Beatles around a tune that could have come from one of the Moody Blues latter-day endeavors. Despite Ordinary Man’s ups and downs, greater care undeniably was taken to hone its songs. Even if not all of them work, The Pinder Brothers’ knack for melody and arrangement is what ultimately keeps Ordinary Man afloat. ½
Of Further Interest...
1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
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