First Appeared in The Music Box, July 2006, Volume 13, #7
Written by John Metzger
There’s no mistaking the message that Randall Bramblett is trying to convey with his latest effort Rich Someday. The title tune has less to do with the actual achievement of financial wealth than it does with the folly of trying to obtain it. The rest of the album, too, deals with dashed dreams, misplaced priorities, and wasted time. Even the artwork cheapens money by distilling it to its lowest common denominator: the penny. In one photo, pennies pour from a pair of cupped hands, while on the cover, a penny is inserted into a frame meant for a globe. Not surprisingly, then, the collection’s 13 tracks are constructed thematically to illuminate the importance of community, connection, love, and friendship.
Unfortunately, Bramblett’s music continues to be less imaginative than his lyrical concepts, and, much like his past outings, Rich Someday primarily features a fusion of Southern rock and soul, though there also are hints of blues and country flitting around its periphery. By removing the textural layers that enveloped his previous endeavor Thin Places, he brought his stylistic approach closer to that of Eric Clapton, but the newfound directness of Bramblett’s arrangements means that the material lives and dies based upon the gutsiness of his backing band’s performance. At times, the ensemble is so impeccably polished in its delivery that the album is left without a distinctive edge. Although Bramblett’s vocals succeed in keeping the songs aloft, even when they stray towards mediocrity, Rich Someday ultimately contains little that truly will push him into the purview of the mainstream.
Rich Someday is available from Barnes & Noble.
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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