"Happy" - Music Review
- Wednesday, March 10, 2004
Artist: Matthew West
Label: Universal South
You’ve got to appreciate someone with the guts to sing, “I am a classic case of dysfunction!” Matthew West serves up that wry observation — and a few others — about life and faith on his debut, "Happy."
Cut from the same alt-rock singer/songwriter cloth as Shaun Groves, Jason Mraz and John Mayer, West demonstrates a knack for radio-friendly hooks with a voice that resonates like Delirious’ Martin Smith’s or slightly more mellow like Jeremy Camp’s. That factor gives songs like “The Turnaround” one of those choruses that’s utterly singable in a driving-in-the-convertible-with-the-top-down sort of way. Same goes for lead single “More,” which shifts with ease from melancholy, piano-driven Brit-rock to a big fuzz-guitar chorus.
Still, it’s hard not to feel that "Happy "comes off sounding a bit constrained. The drum loop and hip-hop intro to the title track had me anticipating more of that street-wise hipness, but the album largely rides on fairly ordinary alt-rock arrangements. Drawing on more diverse stylistic elements (something another new singer/songwriter, Paul Wright, does exceedingly well) would have elevated this good album to sonic greatness.
© 2004 CCM Magazine. All rights reserved. Used with permission. Click here to subscribe.
Recently on Music
Have something to say about this article? Leave your comment via Facebook below!
Listen to Your Favorite Pastors
Add Crosswalk.com content to your siteBrowse available content