The Austin Chronicle

SXSW Platters

Reviewed by Thomas Fawcett, March 7, 2008, Music

Dan Dyer

(Fat Caddy)

It's refreshing not falling back on labels like "retro" and "throw-back" when spinning Dan Dyer's self-titled debut on Fat Caddy Records. Sure, the Austinite's smoky vocals recall giants like Stevie Wonder and Donny Hathaway, but Dyer has as much in common with Spearhead's Michael Franti and Lenny Kravitz, who produced his 2004 solo debut, Of What Lies Beneath, to chilly reviews. Turn your stereo up, and Dyer's rich voice wraps around you on the crawling, gospel-tinged opener "Love Chain." Earnestness is in short supply in today's blue-eyed soul, but Dyer wears emotions on his sleeve and never sings with tongue in cheek, repeatedly asserting that "love can change your life" on "Love's a Game." In a divine falsetto, the album's funkiest track, "Anne-Marie," poses the classic jilted lovers' question: "Why you trippin'?" (Wednesday, March 12, Momo's, 1am.)


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