Last week I talked about the band Semisonic and frankly how great they were. While they only put out three albums in their short but fantastic career, the lead singer, Dan Wilson has kept the torch burning with solo albums that are just as fantastic.
I stumbled across Dan Wilson’s solo career quite by accident. Having thought that Semisonic’s demise spelled the end for the band, I moved on to other things occasionally revisiting the three albums they left behind. Digging through a stack of Cd’s in a Half Priced Books, I stumbled across a disk entitled Dan Wilson, Free Life. Recognizing the name I snagged it and was instantly transported back to the days listening to his classic band. Sadly, when I went looking for more I found nothing. Figuring it was a one and done thing I moved on once again appreciative that I found the single album I had.
It was in 2013 when my wife and I were living in the DC metro area when I saw that Dan Wilson had recently played nearby. Sad that I missed him I decided to check spotify to see if he had released any new albums in the recent years and was surprised to find his album Free life was listed but also a live album. Since then I have kept up with him which brings us to today’s Stand Out Album, Love Without Fear.
Why This Album?
Love Without Fear is his return to form after spending nearly seven years co-writing and producing songs for people like Adele, Weezer, Mike Doughty, Jason Mraz and more. In that time he has honed his craft further with a selection of songs that have a gentle pop sound layered with fully produced orchestral arrangements and carefully planned duets. In many ways he has become the modern incarnation of James Taylor but with a a bit less melancholy and a little more hope.
If you have not listened to Dan Wilson or his band Semisonic, you are missing out. The man has a voice that is both delicate and powerful making him someone who you feel good listening to. It is hard to explain but there is something just plain genuine about his voice and the music that accompanies it. Even when he does fall into the melancholy with songs like Disappearing, he still has a genuine hope to his voice that comes across stronger than the sadness.
Dan has has aged well in the years since his brief pop star fame with Semisonic and, to be honest, he is much better than he was before. I really hope to get a chance to see him live one day and, if I ever see him in the area, I will have to go and see him for myself.
I could pick any song on this album and it would be a great example of Dan’s immense talent. Here are a few I think you’ll dig.
Disappearing. Did I mention James Taylor. This one will show you why I made the comparison.
The opening track and the title song, Love Without Fear. Yeah, it’s that good.
This one is one that everyone who has a significant other can relate to, especially after being together for over a decade. ‘I Can Never Stay Mad At You’ is so very true.
Ok, Where do I get it?
Late to the Game 03/05/2019
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