WSU locals Son of Ian released “Good Morning September” in 2012, and I just tore off the plastic today. Oops. The album, for the most part, is pretty decent (if you listen to it five times). I’ve got a few bones to pick.
This album is gypsy rock meets Creed — a genre and a band I am not fond of separately, but together, “Good Morning September” isn’t dreadful.
I love the ebb and flow of the sax by Dave “The Bishop” Oster on “Sunshine Still Rises” (No. 8), but it’s the vocals that I find hard to swallow. Trenton McKean (vocals/guitar) is a big fan of the low growl style of singing that is solely reserved for fat gospel singers — and even in their case, according to my Arts & Entertainment editor, only one low growl is allowed per song. McKean feels entitled to at least one per sentence!
“Painting The Picture” (No. 10) is the closing track and is possibly the best example of sax awesomeness on the album, but also the best example of McKean’s vocal style. “Stop But Think” (No. 6) is another example of the Creed-like sound, but once again, the sax and guitar save the day.
The intro in “Starshine” (No. 7) is almost as good as the guitar solo that tails the song at the 40-second mark. It comes in again and even stronger than before at the 3:57 mark. Patrick Neville, lead guitar, has his work cut out for him in this song, and truly lets his talent shine through.
I will give McKean props for his lyrics, though. Especially in the song “Overcome” (No. 9), which is my standing favorite, sans growling. When McKean sings, “When bad times come, I want to hold you even though my heart has been painted a shade of blue,” I really like that.
I could see Son of Ian playing a show with the likes of Shaky Trade, although they are funkier fresh. I wouldn’t see Son of Ian in any venue other than Kamikazes. For some reason, it seems fitting.
“Good Morning September” gets two stars from me.