Who says a sophomore album has to be a bad one? Listening to the 2010 winner of American Idol, Lee DeWyze’s second album, Slumberland, is a great musical experience from the first song to the last.
DeWyze’s debut album, So I’m Told, was originally released in 2007, and now he’s come out with Slumberland, which was released in January 2010. Since his first album, there has come a good bit of refining and richness in the instrumentals and vocals of his music.
DeWyze wrote and performed all of the songs featured on this album, but had some outside help from Ryan McGuire with production, drums. and percussion lines, and Louis Svitek on guitars and sitar. Both men are well known for their musical work and, from the sound of the album, DeWyze made a great choice bringing them onto this project.
“Annabelle,” is quite possibly my favorite song on Slumberland. The beautiful sound of the sitar leads the song and the famous, raspy, full voice of Lee DeWyze follows and pours out on listeners. You can hear the amazing control and sweet power in his notes as he sings about trying to keep “Annabelle,” through life’s hardships. With talent like this, it’s no wonder he won the title of American Idol.
Although DeWyze’s voice has similarities to John Mayer, Dave Matthews, and Jack Johnson, his vocals in Slumberland give him originality that does make him stand out as a recording artist, something I’m afraid of his first album didn’t accomplish for me.
I hate to compare but, through songs like “Another Sleep Song” and “All Fall Down,” Lee DeWyze shows an amazing progression and transformation from his debut album. From 2007 to the current day, DeWyze has gained confidence in his vocal abilities that comes forth in his talent. The production on this album is also very professional and makes the difference that DeWyze needed as an artist.
On both albums the lyrics are truly outstanding, and there’s no doubt that DeWyze puts great thought into his songs and their meanings. From cheating to alcohol abuse, and of course love and relationships, Lee covers real-life issues without being too gritty but at the same time not candy coating anything.
Slumberland is an album I can listen to over and over again. I enjoyed all 10 songs by Lee DeWyze and am looking forward to seeing what this new Idol winner has in store for us next. Fortunately for his fans, he has two great albums under his belt for their listening pleasure. I encourage Lee DeWyze fans to purchase this album for their collection.
Article first published as Music Review: Lee DeWyze Slumberland on Blogcritics.