18 Jun 2019
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Andrew Masseurs - Album review - Origins

14 Mar 2018 // A review by Jacquie Walters

There’s no denying Andrew Masseurs’ musicianship and the quality of the production of this album. It’s a clever and accomplished piece of work from an artist who is firmly in control of his craft.

The Bono-esque soaring vocals of So Violent put the listener on notice – this album will grab your ears and you’re in for one heck of a ride – well at least for the first two-thirds.

Masseurs has a gift for writing pop/rock hooks that would be real crowd pleasers in a live performance. Come My Way is a particularly good example. His material is catchy, relatable, and makes the spirit soar.

There’s a lot to like about this energetic, dynamically-interesting collection of material. Ghost is a stand out track with its sure-footed use of dynamics and featuring vocals that any singer anywhere would be proud of.

While the collection of tracks is consciously eclectic, the album as a whole could perhaps have benefited from an independent producer to bring an editing touch and to reign in some of the more unusual creative choices. The inclusion of Walk With Me is an example. Does this track really belong with the rest and what does it really add?

Save Me, Walk With Me, Deep Sunrise and The Last Man on Earth see the album losing some of the great momentum it had established during the first seven tracks. The Last Man on Earth feels a bit indulgent length-wise coming in at 6 minutes and 35 seconds, much of the last minute spent listening to the sound of heavy rain.

The last track Sorrow is a return to form but has a sudden and quite puzzling ending, which leaves a somewhat jarring last impression.

While it’s a great achievement to create an album yourself, playing all the instruments, writing all the material, singing and mixing the tracks there are risks, namely that there’s no voice questioning your choices to make sure they’re in the best interests of the overall project. It can also be hard to judge the relative lyrical strength of your own material and there are definitely some of Masseurs’ songs that are stronger than others.

That being said, Masseurs is a fantastic singer and musician, and this is an enjoyable album that is well worth your time. It feels like the album must have been a cathartic experience for Masseurs, gathering together in one place material written over an extended period and providing the opportunity for him to re-purpose material that has previously been used by Ammp. It’s been a worthwhile endeavour for the listener as well.

★★★★ (4 stars)


Review written by Jacquie Walters

 

About Andrew Masseurs

Andrew Masseurs is a solo musician from Wellington, New Zealand.
Andrew was lead singer for the New Zealand band Ammp. Creating an album From The Back Of The Sun, with 9 singles and EP This Chaotic Symphony.

Andrew was in the 2005 TV2 Play it Strange Documentary Songstar with Mathew Powell featuring their song All I Wanted. Ammp received NZ On Air grants for songs All I Wanted and Ironman and a NZ On Air rebate for Go for Radio Play. Ironman was part of the New Zealand Olympic Challenge official Play it Strange CD 2011. Ammp's song Go was synced in a Vodafone TV Advert and the song Don’t Leave Me Here was in the TV Series Go Girls. Ammp’s songs Let The Sunlight In, Sgt Mayhem and Rabid Creature made the semi finals of the International Songwriting Competition 2011, 2013.

Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Andrew Masseurs

Releases

Origins
Year: 2018
Type: Album

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