David Singer and The Sweet Science - Civil Wars (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

David Singer and The Sweet Science

Civil Wars (2002)

Deep Elm

Deep Elm has done it again. The label doesn't neccessarily put out amazing CDs every time, but whatever it is that they put out, you can always count on it to be pretty darn solid for whatever genere it dabbles in. David Singer's new CD, "Civil Wars," is no different.

David Singer's specialty is catchy, Beatles-esque pop, and he does a damn good job at it. Similarities will abound with Elliot Smith and Badly Drawn Boy, but upon closer listens, you'll realize that Singer doesn't need pro tools or a scraggly beard and the Mercury prize to make compelling pop music. His lush arrangements of tracks like "I'm Not Leaving" and "I'll See You In The Moon" conjur up images of Elvis Costello's poppier side, if anything.

While Singer can orchestrate songs well, his best work comes with minimalistic accompaniment. The album's best track, "I Will Come Back From The War," is a melancholy waltz with excellent lyricism, featuring David's penchant for storytelling. If you're a fan of Jonah's onelinedrawing, you'll get a rough idea.

The only thing the disc is missing is some muscle in certain places, however. The album slides by too quickly in points due to a lack of the "rock", as it were. The folksy pop contained within the CD is more than enough to wake you up on the weekends, and it's just as good to soothe you to sleep. All in all, Deep Elm has another winner on their hands - it might not be spectacular, but I'll be damned if it's not great.

I'm Not Leaving [full]
Everything I Should Forget [clip]
I'm Not Leaving [clip]
I Will Come Back From The War [clip]
Slightly Damaged, Hardly Used [clip]