Bassel - Submerged
Whatever your position on global warming, you have to admit that it's going to be a really hot summer. And what better way of cooling off than jumping into a blissfully cold pool. That's what comes to mind when thinking of the title of Bassel's latest project, Submerged. It's also a good description of this refreshing release. And for people out there not hip to the fact, Bassel is an indie folk artist from Ohio. The most important thing to know is that Submerged is the result of Bassel's solo effort, not a combined collaboration as his earlier work.
The first song is a short instrumental, a great transition which serves as a simple introduction. The second song, "Senseless Dreams", is brave way to start off the record. It is so vulnerable, struggling with remorse and regret. "I've played it safe for years on end and now it's getting harder to pretend." "What She Is" sounds twangy from beginning to end, showcasing the diversity of skill from Bassel.
"Submerged" has a nice, soothing guitar riff. It is filled with insecurities and inadequacies, admitting "wondering how i pulled off something, cause I'm not something." You can sense desperation with lyrics like "I'm finding I lose sleep, I hope this pool don't pull me under, cause then I'll wonder".
"All-nighter" has a hypotonic tempo. It is intimate yet carefree at the same time. The singer's voice really shines through this song, probably more so than at any other time on the record. The violin in the background is both pleasant and haunting at once.
Changing pace dramatically, "Mi Dia" is a fun and upbeat track with drums and saxophone being emphasized before the song suddenly ends abruptly. "One Man Symphony" fits right in place next, again with more sax in the background. "Double Life" faithfully keeps the same relaxed and mellow pace as the rest of the record. "Message", the last song, likewise does the same thing and ends the work in much the same way it began: a casual, laid back atmosphere for reflecting.
Overall, Bassel has matured as an musician, successfully finding his own sound as a solo artist. These songs are powerful, both acoustically and lyrically. Submerged is probably not something you will grab to listen to while at the pool or beach this summer. But if you find yourself contemplating while on a road trip or a stormy, rainy night, this maybe just what you need.
Twitter Summary: Submerged is a strong, impressive solo effort from Bassel. This is a great effort showcasing his diverse musical skills.
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on 2010-07-27 Bassel Said:
The new Submerged LP will be available for purchase on iTunes, Amazon, Napster, Zune, and many others on August 1, 2010!
Free downloads WILL be issued in the coming months to support the online release, so please keep posted at any of the following websites:
7/28 - Reggie's Music Joint (21+) - Chicago, IL
8/20 - Pelotonia w/ Counting Crows & Augustana - Columbus, OH
9/9 - Reggie's Main Stage (All Ages) - Chicago, IL
9/16 - Musica (All Ages) - Akron, OH
9/17 - MilkBoy Coffee - Ardmore/Philadelphia, PA
9/18 - Rockwood Music Hall - New York City, NY
10/26 - Double Door - Chicago, IL
on 2010-07-27 hstisgod Said:
Good review Ben... Yeah Bassel placed third in last year's IOTY. I spoke to him earlier today. He'll be August 20th for Augustana and Counting Crows. Got reacquainted with this release and really enjoyed "Senseless Dreams".
The whole release has a pleasing conformity of genre and instrumentation. "Light" shows an awesome understanding for contrasting melodies. This project is going to continue to flourish, do not forget where ya heard him first.