Artist: Noam Weinstein
Album: On Waves
Release Date: 02/29/2016
With no less than eight albums to his credit, Noam Weinstein is a seasoned pop pro, an artist who utilizes any number of tools at hand, be it brass, strings, or simply his own expressive melodies. With the catchy jaunt of Steely Dan and a voice tailor made to convey his punchy tunes, Weinstein’s latest, On Waves, takes a sobering perspective and expresses in a surprisingly joyful way, reflecting on the loss of his mother and the arrival of his son. The tender “In the Time We Have” and “You Will Be Here” point to the fact that indeed, the time we spend with our loved ones is, sadly, all too brief and therefore every minute ought to be cherished. Nevertheless, this isn’t a mournful set of songs by any means. Instead, it comes across as a celebration. “Last Reincarnation,” “Mother” and “Through Your Eyes” are practically giddy in their exaltation, while the rhythmic come on of “Hey Girl” and the playful “Future Therapy Fund” direct their energy to his wife who’s obviously exhausted after carrying on the tiring tasks of motherhood.
Although some of Weinstein’s lyrics tend to approach the metaphysical (“It comes in waves/The chord, the scale, the scream/ It comes in waves/The sleep that knows no dreams/This here is a love that knows no graves”), his sentiments are effortlessly expressed, whether they’re directed at his mother or his newborn son. The feelings are palpable, but not so precious as to preclude a sense of humor. On “Intelligent Design,” he heralds his wife’s functionality: “From your brain to your behind/You almost make me believe in intelligent design.” Even when Weinstein has his doubts, a breezy delivery like “Our Frequency” belies any sense of confusion.
Ultimately, Weinstein emerges as a perfect pop pundit, one who finds room for both pleasant melodies and a keen message of universal appeal. On Waves is that kind of album. Like life itself, it’s best to simply roll with it.
– Lee Zimmerman