Saturday, August 11, 2007

Ben Jelen

That's pronounced "Yellin," by the way. And that's what I'll be doing when he comes to The Basement on August 19. (Doors open at 7pm;
$6.00 Advance / $8.00 Day of show.)

If you haven't heard of Ben Jelen, you're not alone. Though his music is seemingly everywhere -- Smallville, One Tree Hill, and the compilation
Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur to name only a few -- his music's gone largely unnoticed. Which is a shame because his newest CD Ex-sensitive is brilliant.

Born a Scotsman, but raised in the states, this piano-, violin-, and guitar-playing singer/songwriter is a breath of fresh air amidst the staleness of today's emo shoegazing. With a pop senstivity, Jelen mixes insightful lyrics with enough musical pizazz to create a sound that's unique and songs that make you want to listen again and again.

Ex-sensitive, shows it's power mostly in the opening track "Pulse" and the lighter second track "Where Do We Go." Though there are other stand-outs on the 13-track album, these two songs really show his diversity both musically and lyrically. They're each powerhouses but in very different ways.

The album is available on iTunes, so jump over and take a listen. I don't think you'll be disappointed.

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