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coverpic flag Ireland - Full Moon 164 - 01/30/10

Ben Reel
Time To Get Real
Tuff Paddys/ B.Reel Records

Time To Get Real is Ben Reel's 5th album, and our first musical encounter. We're getting on quite well, but not great. We're friendly but not friends.

Sometimes the beat is a bit on the boring side, the swing doesn't quite move me. It's too tidy, too clean, too neat. And that goes for the vocal performance as well. Neat can be nice, but when neat is boring, it ends up being a little less than interesting. Leonard Cohen once wrote about reciting poetry that one should not try to pretend to be a butterfly when speaking of a butterfly. (Well, some might say that his singing sounds like imitating a brick.) But this is what I feel Reel is doing from time to time. It's as he's trying to convince me of his despair or hopes or pain, instead of letting us live it through his telling.

On the good side, there are some good arrangements, nice back up-singing and cool guitar playing throughout the record. But, unfortunately, that does not make up for the elements that pushes me away from these songs. Not at all, just not interesting or honest enough.

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