Wyatt Funderburk “Transients: 1999 – 2009”
A collection of demos and rarities from Wyatt – a few show up in finished form on 2013’s Novel and Profane. There is plenty to sift through, and many of the songs are good. Some snippets like “Only You” and “Alone Again” simply demonstrate Wyatt’s mastery of Beach Boys three-part harmony. “Everything You Are” and “Dear Mrs. Curtis” are great songs, particularly the latter as it describes the struggle of the musician as starving artist, “waiting for that perfect song.”
Wyatt’s demos are so polished, it’s not hard to imagine any of the tunes fully developed. It’s not all perfect, as he hasn’t got the falsetto mastered on “Stand Off,” and he goes experimenting with instrument sounds on “Bross – Please Stop By.” A few songs are fully fleshed out and just deserved release like the brilliant “Why Does He Have To Be So Good To You” and the cocky “One Night With Me.” This is essential for Funderburk fans and others can pick and choose the most polished gems.
John Dunbar “From Expectation To Surrender”
John Dunbar marches to his own beat, his latest self produced album combines influences from The Beatles and The Kinks. Considering he developed The Rutles-like tribute to The Kinks (The Kunks) he’s incorporated the style into the opening title track with its neat chorus and backing harmonies. The production is clean, but fairly basic and unlike his last album Third Guessing, John shows a lot more humor and melodic skill here with “She Walks Her Dog In Pajamas” and “Credit For Not Taking Credit.”
Often the rhythms are infectious enough to carry the songs like “I Didn’t Know I Was Saying Goodbye” along, even if they go on a little long. Worth checking out for sure, if only for “The Old Switcheroo” where you suddenly realize you’re too old to be part of the “In Crowd.”