Ben Kweller - Sha Sha (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Ben Kweller

Sha Sha (2002)


Fuck. I was in the middle of writing a super-long review about how insanely wonderful this album is, and how it's the best pop album of 2002, and all sorts of stuff. Then my computer crashed and I lost the whole damn thing. So now, you get the shortened version.

Ben Kweller is the savior of pop music. He does the rock well [the Weezer-esque "Wasted & Ready" and the insanely catchy "Commerce, TX]. He does the ballad well [the well orchestrated "In Other Words" and the tearjerkingly beautiful "Lizzy]. He even does the silly well ["How It Should Be (Sha Sha)"].

His lyrics are top-notch, considering he is only 20 [fuck, I'm 20 and I'm not nearly as talented as this kid]. His wide range of influences create a sound that is just as familiar and warm as it is fresh and new. Imagine Ben Lee, Ben Folds [there must be something in the "Ben" name], Elliott Smith, Weezer, and Jeff Tweedy [of Wilco] got together to train a supermusician, if you will. One who can make a banjo and a slide guitar work side by side next to a string quartet. One who can be ironic one second and heartfelt the next. One who can make the best pop album of 2002 as well as being sincere enough to keep his "cred." Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you: Ben Kweller. He's amazing. Don't doubt it.

How It Should Be (Sha Sha)
Commerce, TX