Somewhat of a musical prodigy, Jace Pawlak has had some instrument in hand since the age of five. When took up the piano a teen, he began songwriting which became his personal passion and career path. He's had his songs recorded by melodic rock bands such as Tango Down, Far Cry, and Goodbye Thrill. Additionally, in the last ten years he's found time to record three albums: one with Kindred Saint, with his father and brother, and two solo albums. He arrives with his third solo album, Perspective, financed through a Kickstarter campaign.
There's little doubt: Pawlak is a gifted musician. The years have only seasoned his songwriting skills. Mostly developed and arranged from his piano skills, Pawlak has a keen sense of melody and rhythm, which puts him in the same school of rock as his influence Billy Joel. You'll catch this on the lighter The Unknown and the bit bluesy We Don't Know Anything, though both songs seem to reflect an agnostic and deterministic philosophical slant. Weird.
After these things, Pawlak essentially works the angles of AOR melodic rock, crafting song with rich vocal harmonies, toe-tapping groove, catchy refrains, and nice guitar leads (supplied by his father). This comes more significantly with Renegade, Cry, and the ballad-like anthem What If We Were Wrong. Pawlak also has a good voice, singing with strong melody. Additionally, his lyrics are generally cogent, notably when he appears to be bashing on an ex within Don't Talk to Me. It's all another song moved by the piano but also the groove of the rhythm section. Of final note is that, excepting lead guitar from pop and additionally guitar from his brother, Pawlak plays every other instrument, and he also produced and mixed the album. Did I say he was something a wunderkind?
Overall then, Perspective is solid and entertaining accomplishment for Pawlak, something that bears witness to his passion for songwriting. However, I wondering where he and this album will find an audience. His sound certainly isn't all that current, especially here in America. Maybe better in the UK and Europe. Perhaps these songs could be picked up by other artists and given a different treatment, maybe in the realm of current country music. But I'm just spitballing here. If you like classic AOR melodic rock, you should check this out.
For it's AOR melodic rock, Perspective is solid and entertaining accomplishment for Pawlak, something that bears witness to his passion for songwriting.
It's been sometime since I heard from Iced Earth. My last Iced Earth review was nine years ago for 2008's The Crucible of Man - Something Wicked Part 2. With all the music that gets pitched my way on a daily, and yearly, basis I'm not ... [ Read More ]