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Jon Troast
Second Story
(self-released)
www.jontroast.com


For those closet folk-pop fans out there, Jon Troast has provided a painless way to come out and admit that yes, you love that sweet acoustic goodness. The fusion of numerous genres allows the artist to appeal to a wide audience while still maintaining his roots in folk-pop. Jon manages to bring witty lyrics and sincere melodies to the table while not giving in to the artistic tendency to create 'experimental' music which requires a music degree to understand its 'complexity'.

Jon is based out of Williams Bay, Wisconsin and is accompanied by a highly talented group of musicians. The instrumental menagerie includes the standard drums, bass, guitar and vocals, but the mandolin, banjo, horns and piano bring a rounded feel to the tracks, which is uncommon in most albums these days. Jon's vocals tend to sound very much like the airy vocals of John Ondrasik of Five For Fighting or a toned down James Blunt, and his styles are similar to a modern James Taylor.

The tracks on the album provide such a refreshing diversity that I could hardly stop listening. Each track seems to tell a story, both musically and lyrically, which is quite evident in the opening track, "Everything Not Her". The song speaks of falling in love with the emotion of someone who has experienced just that ("The closer she gets, the more I forget / about everything that's not her"). The country influences shine through on "You're That Way", with the very appropriate mandolin and banjo strumming similar to some of Keith Urban's music. "Dish And The Spoon" does a complete 180 by bringing out blues themes to fairy tale-like lyrics with metaphorical implications. One of the crowning achievements of this album is the hauntingly beautiful ballad "Mary Jane" which speaks of lost love and regret with a calm, dignified piano carrying the emotion of the song to the listener.

So, based on a complete stranger's opinion, you should definitely check this guy out. I have no doubt that Jon Troast will not leave you disappointed, and let's face it, you were going to spend that cash on cheetos and porn anyway.

-Liger Woods

Track Listing:
1. Everything Not Her
2. The Most
3. Knock Down
4. Was It Ever Really Mine
5. You're That Way
6. Dish And Spoon
7. Better Love
8. Hurt Me Like A Good Friend
9. Mary Jane
10. Family


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Mike Doughty



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