The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

CD Review-Gary Fields-Sounds About Right

By Alex Muhindura/entertainment editor

Banks looking for a smooth, non-confrontational voice to fill their lobbies will love Gary Fields’ CD Sounds About Right.

People seeking a smooth, soulful crooner as the CD advertises, however, will be disappointed and underwhelmed.

The music is not terrible. It just leaves the listener indifferent. Fields’ easy-listening collection works for people who dislike emotion, skill and a tinge of pain in their music.

Fields attempts to re-create the smooth sounds of Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack but sounds like he arrived 50 years too late.

The musical arrangements, filled with soft guitar, 1950s-era piano and Fields’ bland soulless voice, are actually not bad. They just don’t have any punch or zip.

It seems as if he doesn’t care that much. If he doesn’t care, then why should the listeners?

Art is about making bold choices.

Would James Brown have sold as much if he didn’t put his soul on the records and shout out incomprehensible grunts?

On the album, Fields makes safe, boring choices reminiscent of the sounds heard while waiting in a long line at the bank. The soft, repetitive music can be heard, but customers care only about getting to the front of the line and escaping as soon as possible.

On the most ironic song, “Learning the Blues,” Fields “explains” the blues but doesn’t sound too bummed about it. The song gives the impression that he searched the blues on Wikipedia then decided to write a song about it.

While his voice is technically sound, no sign of the trademark anguish that usually fills blues songs comes across. 

The tracks blend into each other like a goulash of sonic mediocrity. They sound like the CD an American Idol runner-up would make.

The songs have talent and great production but lack the direction, drama and urgency that come from starving artists.

On the intro track, “Sounds About Right,” he lays down the blueprint for his elevator music masterpiece. His lyrics are non-specific but, to his credit, do rhyme, and his voice sounds like he just doesn’t want to let go.

Fields’ managers should plant a gallon of whiskey in the booth and see if it makes a difference. At least he wouldn’t sound as stiff.

While great for elevators and lobbies, this should not be anywhere near a CD player. It makes a great coaster or Frisbee, but little else.

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