Kelley Stoltz - Natural Causes - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Kelley Stoltz - Natural Causes

by Ljubinko Zivkovic Rating:8 Release Date:2018-08-03
Kelley Stoltz - Natural Causes
Kelley Stoltz - Natural Causes

Yes, natural causes indeed! Kelley Stoltz has grown into a true archivist/musicologist who channels all his musical inspirations and constantly comes up with album after album that varies from pure adoration for the musical source, (his track by track workout of Echo & The Bunnymen’s Crocodiles) or a detailed, intricate combination of the original sources (most of his other albums).

Natural Causes, his latest venture is no exception, and again the results are up there with the high standards he has set himself already with his previous releases. Somehow, he again shows that American artists can get to the essence of basically a European vision of rock music and channel it into something of their own.

Stoltz though seems to be concentrated on the 80s interpretations of the 60s, with a few touches in between. The title track again shows how close Echo & The Bunnymen are to his heart and why he is currently a touring member of the band. But then, there’s obvious love for Julian Cope, as a solo artist and as the force behind Teardrop Explodes on “How Psychedelic of You”, without skipping on the electronic side of the 80s through Human League or OMD, for that matter on “My Friend” or direct quote of Kraftwerk and their influence, “Static Electricity”.

The 60s visions come through the eyes of the paramount figure of Ray Davies, “Decisions, Decisions” - as seen through the eyes of R. Stevie Moore, and “Our Modern World” with a touch of Syd Barrett in a duo with Davies, “A Rolling Tambourine” thrown in for a good measure. Still, all of this is done with a distinctive personal touch that shows he has assimilated his encyclopaedic musical knowledge into one ear-pleasing bundle, particularly exemplified in “Where You Will” and “Are You An Optimist”, tracks where all those ideas mould into something completely personal, yet still identifiable.

With Natural Causes Stoltz has yet again shown that relying on musical influences requires not only a vast knowledge but also a deep understanding of your sources, making that the only way your own music can transcend its sources and come up with something, as Captain Beefheart would say, strictly personal.


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