Walpole, MA singer-songwriter Dan Masterson is back with his all new studio effort titled Learn To Live. The dynamic and versatile musician has been featured here on the site previously in the past, and this new effort fully realizes the creative vision that he had in mind when he was conjuring up these tracks in the studio, and really encapsulates the type of musician that he aspires to be.
We start things out with the title track, a piano fueled odyssey with Dan's vocals melding in together wonderfully with the instrumentation at hand which is reminiscent of artists such as Ben Folds and Andrew McMahon with a musical originality that is all his own and is starting to come into his own right before our very eyes and ears. "Twice" is my favorite tune off the effort that evokes a more folk-rock sensibility that suits Dan particularly well, and shows the remarkable musical growth that he has shown in such a short span of time with his vocals able to adapt easily to the ever changing musical climate around him, and this track definitely takes the cake from all the others on this effort. "Fine" is a more downtempo effort and features a pure piano based melody that takes a hold of you pretty quickly and wraps you into its world where Dan eloquently communicates his musical quest to a captive and receptive audience. "Helpless" gets us ready for the conclusion of the album with another folk based track that gives us the best of both worlds with Dan's insatiable musical vision continuing to mold and take shape with this inventive effort that adequately portrays where Dan is musically and in his personal life as well. "Bayonet" ends our musical stay here with a subtle, neatly focused musical arrangement with Dan's whispering vocals adding a great deal of beauty and sophistication to a simple yet elegant track that ties everything together in one neat little package and sends us on our way with a great effort to look back fondly on. It's been a pleasure seeing Dan mature musically over the years, as I covered him on the site previously a few years ago when he was first starting out and I was amazed at how his talent was constantly developing and he was always looking for ways to improve and hone his craft, and it struck me at how dedicated he was to his music career and how he would always focus his creative energies on getting better musically and seeing what lay ahead down the road.
All in all, a terrific and well rehearsed effort from Dan Masterson, a musician who is continuing to develop right before us into a jack of all trades who is more than capable of handling anything thrown before him, and turn it into honest and beautifully crafted compositions.
EP Score: 4/5
"Learn To Live" is available for purchase physically and digitally via Dan's Bandcamp site right over here.
Learn To Live