First Appeared in The Music Box, May 2006, Volume 13, #5
Written by Tracy M. Rogers
Canadian singer-songwriter Daniel Powter is probably best-known stateside for his song Bad Day, which has appeared frequently on that unfortunate, pop culture mainstay American Idol. Included on his self-titled debut, Bad Day typifies Powter’s music in all of its bombastic, maudlin vainglory. That is not to say, of course, that there aren’t a few bright spots on the outing; Powter simply seems much more palatable when laying down phat dance grooves than when serenading on top of overdone piano-and-string arrangements. Tracks like the booty-shaking opener Song 6, the infinitely dance-able Hollywood, and the mellow, yet groovy Give Me Life are enjoyable enough — even if they aren’t edifying from a lyrical perspective. For each of these high points, however, the listener is treated to several clichéd pop ballads about psychologically abusing one’s girlfriend, getting stoned, or having a one-night stand. Of these, only the Elton John-inspired Jimmy Gets High and the sophisticated Styrofoam are marginally tolerable. When all is said and done, Daniel Powter’s self-titled debut is an album for the TRL generation, a collection of overblown pop tunes that possesses little substance and even less innovation.
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1 Star: Pitiful
2 Stars: Listenable
3 Stars: Respectable
4 Stars: Excellent
5 Stars: Can't Live Without It!!
Copyright © 2006 The Music Box