Neil Nathan is a big fan of NYC rock and Detroit soul music, and it shows. Nathan teamed up with Bobby Harlow (The Go) to produce his debut full-length album. The Distance Calls effortlessly merges jangly pop with classic 1970′s guitar rock. Even though we covered his excellent take on ELO’s “Do Ya” that opening single “California Run” is an upbeat strumming song with a killer hook that sets the tone. Similar to The Eagles or Jackson Brown, it’s meat and potatoes rock and roll that satisfies all the way through. The blues styled “Get On” has a bit of Dylan and Matthew Sweet in it’s DNA with a rolling organ and guitar solo break that is so cool it’ll keep ice cream from melting.
“Too Late” is another gem, and the ballad “Don’t Walk Away” is a another well crafted piece of piano soul that recalls Cat Stevens, and you will get your lighter out and raise it high. There are few musicians out there that can pull off this combo of energy and soulful songwriting (Both Matthew Sweet and Jeff Tweedy qualify). Only the sparse “Far Off” feels unfinished, but every other track shines here. Highly recommended for sure.