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Alexa Ray Joel
A.R.J. Music

There comes a time in the lives of many celebrity children when they try their hand at their parent's claim to fame. In some instances, the child just rides on the clout of their parents due to the fact that they are painfully and quite obviously not cut out to follow in the same career path as their parent. In other cases, they have the talent to shine despite who their parents are. Alexa Ray Joel, daughter of Billy Joel, is currently taking on such an endeavor. With her first official release, an EP titled Sketches, Joel proves a little, but the question is if she proves enough to shine on her own.

From the initial listening to her voice, it is hard to tell that Joel has unique talent. Slightly rusty sounding, her voice is strong, but there is nothing that really captivates the audience. Fluctuating between a jazzy and soulful sound, Joel belts and vocalizes as she skips through notes in her songs. Her voice remains good, but is lacking the top coating and sheen of glitter and glamour; thus, making them rather predictable.

The chord changes, progressions, and modulations are all flat within her music. Someone slightly knowledgeable about music can easily see where her music is headed. It's generic and if her goal is to sound like many other predecessors, she succeeded while her originality falters. Lyrics such as "I've got an f***king problem with authority" just make her look like an angst ridden teenager trying to find the hippest way to piss of an adult.

Despite all of these problems, Joel is not completely incapable of producing a good record. The problem lies in the mere fact that she's not thinking creatively enough to produce something that is not a standard carbon copy kind of album. She's got a basis, but the casing she's trying to fit it into just doesn't work for her. Her music's tendency towards a juvenile sound is evidence of this. Joel needs to scrap this idea and try again to really achieve a rightful artist's status.

-Teresa Moreno

Track Listing:
1. The Heart Of Me
2. Now It's Gone
3. Don't Let It Bring You Down
4. The Revolution Song
5. Resistance
6. Song Of Yesterday

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