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Seth Candan
©2010 Independently released
Review by Lucky Boyd

The Aftermath
(2010) CD
$ 13.99

Each of us has experienced anticipation.  In the aftermath of our anticipation is either exuberant elation or a let down.  I remember standing in line for five hours to be one of the first to ride the new Batman rollercoaster at AstroWorld in Houston, Texas.  As you can imagine, the anticipation was high and the ride did not disappoint in the least.  When I heard that I would be asked to review the new Seth Candan CD, produced by Texas Music Awards nominee Mike McClure, there was a great deal of anticipation.  Finally, the disc arrived.  I typically review the packaging first, allowing me to learn what the artist was trying to portray visually with the release.  My rule is that the cover should never run counter to what is heard through the speakers.  Seth Candan’s release passed the first test easily, as the liner notes indicate the passion and experience that would soon emanate from the headphones.  Next, I like to browse the titles to get a sense of what the artist likes to sing about.  With titles like “Weekend’s Gone,” “One Night Stand,” “Rollin’ With Your Buddies,” and “Swamp-Footed Bastard,” I could tell I was in for a lesson in living on the wild side.  A bonus feature of the project is that the lyrics are enclosed and this gave me a chance to get a generic look at Seth’s songwriting.  He pens five, co-writes four, and covers one; a nice mix.  Noting that McClure was producing (except for two cuts) was particularly instrumental in my anticipation level, as McClure has emerged as an outstanding producer of Texas music.  I found two photographs of Candan inside the packaging, but neither of them created any bias as to whether the music would hold up.  They were artistic and typical, telling me that perhaps Seth’s focus was going to be on the music.  As is done around here, the CD was ripped to hi-fi mp3 and loaded in to my review folder.  I use a wave editor to take a “look” at the songs, which gives me an indication of the level of production I’ll be hearing, shows me the structure of the song, tells me how long the intros and instrumental breaks will be, and alerts me to any hidden tracks.  Then I sort the songs alphabetically to see if there is any significant meaning to the order.  Seeing none, I re-sorted this disc by track number and loaded them into my player.  Here, I can see the length of each track and see if any cuts will be too long for radio or too short to be taken seriously.  All this gathered information showed me that Candan’s release was within formula, for the most part, and would probably be a fairly decent project.  Okay, so it’s time to listen.  I’ve awaited this for a while, I’ve done the research on Candan’s website to see how he treats his fans and his career, and now I fluff the pillow in my review chair, don the wireless headphones, adjust my favorite soft drink on my leather coaster, click on track one, and press play.  One of the exciting features of the Batman rollercoaster was that your feet were not enclosed within the ride and dangled freely below you as you rode.  As the first notes of “Weekend’s Gone” filled my brain space and Candan began his recorded performance, I knew that the aftermath of my anticipation was going to be an exhilarating ride that I wouldn’t soon forget.  Track after track, I was led through turns, hills, loops, and thrills as Candan proved why he is touted as the next really big act in Texas music.  The band’s performance is flawless and Candan’s voice is stellar throughout.  McClure’s treatment of the arrangements is masterful, leaving Candan with a project that will surely stand up to any 2010 release anywhere.  The writing is solid, the songs are presented in the best possible order, and Candan has at least four cuts that Texas radio will embrace.  Airplay will be frequent and vast as fans continue their love affair with Candan’s music.  Seth is comfortable with his influences and they shine through as he mixes country, rock, and alternative themes into an explosion of excitement that can have only one possible aftermath:  success.  As the Batman coaster pulled into the station, I pondered another five hour wait to duplicate the experience.  I forewent the wait and I never rode that coaster again.  The beauty of music is that I can enjoy THE AFTERMATH again, and I think I will… right now.

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Seth Candan