Anywhere You Go

Kevin Griffin

The End/BMG, 2019

http://www.kevingriffinmusic.com

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 10/31/2019

For the first time, Better Than Ezra frontman and renowned songwriter Kevin Griffin is going it alone. He deviates from the traditional Ezra sound for a fresh pop sheen that seems to work fairly well for him.

Opening track “Are We Still Here?” has some of the freshest guitar work I’ve heard coming from him in almost forever. It’s a nice change of pace for the standard, traditional AOR sound that Ezra worked with for 20 years. In fact, the last two or so minutes of the track are a dynamic guitar and piano battle that really stand out and make you go wow.

Unfortunately, not everything here is that glorious. “When I Metcha” sounds like a weak pop track from 2005 and doesn’t do much to become memorable. Seeing as he’s become a go-to songwriter for pop and country groups, it’s almost obvious that he would go in an overall poppier direction than what Ezra mined forever. “Hacienda” is a bit better, something beachy and bright, so not all is completely lost.

“No One Makes It Out Alive” and “Anyone Ever” come across as more well-rounded pop songs, particularly the latter, which is something more akin to his past. That’s better than trying to completely reinvent yourself for no real reason whatsoever. Kudos for knowing what makes you great and interesting and not changing everything about your signature sound.

Overall, this is a mixed bag of music; there’s some really great stuff like “Anyone Ever” and “Are We Still Here?” and there’s other things that will make you scratch your head in disbelief. But for a first-time solo effort, there’s a lot of stuff here to be admired. Griffin shows he’s still more than capable of cranking out great songs, even if they’re for himself and not for Barenaked Ladies, Howie Day, or Sugarland.

Rating: B-

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


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