Listening to Umpteen feels like listening to an album when they were “records” as opposed to a newfangled CD. Like some old Badfinger with the Jellyfish twist, Adrian Belew’s Bears or the very early Billy Joel, when albums clocked in at 35 or 40 minutes. Ross comes in at about 41 which seems perfect for this well-balanced straight-ahead smart pop set. Songwriting and melody prevail here.
Some love songs, some space songs, some in between, a variety of topics and approaches but nothing so sticky or sweet that you want to avoid it after a few listens. It remains sturdy and pleasant throughout, not getting stuck on any particular tempo or glued to some sacrificially punk arrangement. Its even-keeled production never gets too thick or wiry.
Ask me and I’ll tell you for the umpteenth time, it is good. E-Squared, 1815 Division St., Suite 101, Nashville, TN 37203;