Next Earth Records
There is something refreshingly down-to-earth about the title of H.E. Pabst’s debut album. This is as far from corporate product as an album can get. The New Jersey-based singer/songwriter has no desire to become an MTV star or even somebody that Rolling Stone would label as a “Hot New Artist.”
Of course, age has a lot to do with Pabst’s no-frills, no glamour marketing approach. From the simple, humble black and white shots in the CD booklet, it’s apparent that Pabst is a baby boomer. The music is dated as well, conjuring ghosts of ’70s AM radio. This sounds like the acoustic pop music my parents used to listen to in the station wagon during long road trips. Unlike many of the male solo artists today, Pabst is truly rooted in folk; he is not a rock & roll artist taking the unplugged route. Ah, but there is country as well, as proudly displayed in “Country Love,” which is probably the most upbeat and “rocking” tune on the album.
Dedicating the record to his sons, Pabst has written an album that has crossover appeal between generations. It’s about as far from fashionable as contemporary music gets, yet that’s what makes it so charming. The songs generate warmth, whether they reflect Pabst’s sadness or joy.
H.E. Pabst: www.hepabst.com