Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Alternative Rock, Folk, Pop, Rock
Mmmm . . mellow . .
brian tunick | 12/29/1998
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Bad Religion have been a somewhat frustrating band to follow because of their doggedly clinging to their signature style. With very few exceptions, every song they put out is a punk/hard rock song. Even Greg Graffin's lyrics, while suggesting he's no half-assed teenaged anarchist, tend to grate after awhile. I mean, I'm a college graduate too, but I don't go around muttering about the lugubrious moiety of sycophantic troglodites, or whatever.So, imagine my grin when I plopped "American Lesion" onto the platter and found that Greg had finally let the heart of his music shine through -- the melody. Yessir, that's what BR is about (or at least why I'm a fan); catchy pop tunes sung with passion. Almost all of these tunes could easily have been Bad Religion songs with the same old instrumentation and a few 4-syllable words tossed in. But Greg shows admirable restraint with both the vocab and the guitars. It's a jaunty, piano-driven album that even features a sappy (but hopelessly catchy) love song, "Maybe She Will." That song, along with "Opinion," "Fates Cruel Hand," and a couple of others, are the highlights of what should be a very satisfying diversion for long-time BR fans, provided they can bear to admit they actually do like something besides punk rock.So, it isn't perfect, but it is extremely pleasant . I hope Greg sees fit to put out another "Lesion." I'll be waiting with my credit card number."
A true Renaissance man
Katie Halpin | Clifton Park, NY United States | 06/14/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've had this cd for about 4 years, and every time I listen to it I feel refreshed and somehow more introspective about life and relationships in general. When you listen to this cd, you hear the innermost personal thoughts and feelings of a man who isn't exactly known for expressing them in his other songs.I think what made me a hardcore fan of Bad Religion in the first place was their soaring vocal harmonies and incredible sense of melody (not to mention the thought-provoking lyrics), and Greg displays his ample talent on this masterpiece with passionate delivery, playing, and verse. Although, like I said, I'm a BR fan as well, I also love more slower, acoustic kinds of music and so was not disappointed at all with American Lesion. However, if you're a punk/BR fan who is buying this cd in expectation of blazing guitars and galloping beats, you'll be sorely disappointed. Well actually, maybe you won't...from what I've read and heard, most Bad Religion fans who bought this were pleasantly surprised to find that they actually enjoyed and appreciated it.Back to the cd itself...The fact that Greg plays all of the instruments and does all the vocals himself is impressive enough, without taking into account the fact that the song-writing process itself must have been a somewhat painful one. I've read that Mr. Graffin was going through a divorce around the time he made this cd, and the lyrics to some of these songs serve as a reminder of the emotional agony he must have been going through. Interestingly enough, the saddest song on the cd, "Maybe She Will", is musically the most upbeat. But just listen to the words.Greg's vocal ability truly shines through on this cd as well. He has an incredibly unique voice; it isn't a so-called "pretty" one, but I like it that way. It's rich and ragged, with a depth and sincerity to it that is rarely found elsewhere in the music world. And not only that, but the man knows how to hit his notes--listen carefully to the end of "Fate's Cruel Hand" and you'll hear him hit a high note in flawless fashion, which is quite the feat for a deep-voiced man such as himself.I've heard recently that Greg is planning to make an "American Lesion 2" sometime latter this year. Please Mr. Graffin, DO IT! Your efforts and talent will be truly appreciated."
Further Proof of the Greatest Punk Mind of Our Time
brian tunick | west new york, nj United States | 01/12/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've been a Bad Religion fan since they came out, and have found them to be very adaptable. From their technically shaky 'How Could He$% be Any Worse' beginnings to their morally uplifting and melodic 'Streetkid Named Desire,' they have changed with the definition of punk (or against that definition if you consider Blink 182 and Good Charolette punk.)
But this time, singer and all-around genius Greg Graffin has really outdone himself. And that's a difficult thing to say for a man with a career that has spanned 3 decades and helped to define a genre. All Bad Religion fans will love hearing an acoustic version of 'Cease,' most will identify with the heartfelt 'Opinion,' and almost all who give it a chance will find the tunes catchy. But there's more to it than a few catchy tunes. If you think this sounds remotely adult-contemporary but somehow doesn't suck, you're onto something. Something we'll hopefully see more of in the future. A new chapter in the genre that is punk. Hey, it had to happen. A lot of us true punks are pushing 40 and although three chords and distortion will never die, something new had to come out. Greg found that, and did it in a way true punks, pop junkies and true adults will appreciate. I think the real question is when will we get to hear NOFX emotionally singing 'Hotdog in a Hallway.'
My only critique is this album's extremely quiet release. If more people were exposed, I think Blink 182 and Brittney Spears would sell fewer records, and Fat Mike would be shopping for an acoustic bass. This could be the first step towards a musically enlightened mass. Thanks Greg. Please give us more."