‘Dinosaur Jr. frontman releases long awaited solo record’, runs the headline. You might expect this album to be deliberately low-key, and so it is: almost entirely acoustic, with little of the raw fuzz of its fossilized bigger brother. ‘Listen To Me’ has shades of Evan Dando’s bittersweet pop melodies, while the country-tinged ‘Not Enough’ weaves boy-girl harmonies together with a melancholy campfire vibe. It’s Sunday morning hangover music; inoffensive strum-along fare. Listen to any of these ten songs in isolation and you’d prick up your ears, but over the course of an album there’s far too little variance to keep you engaged. If you knew nothing of the musical stature of this man, and the respect he should be accorded for a long and great career, you might dismiss this album as the plaintive musings of yet another ten-a-penny bedroom troubadour.

By Chris Watkeys

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