The nine songs that together comprise Andy Evans’s Miracle are well-produced mixtures of multitudinous musical genres; rock, soul, country, r&b, and southern rock especially stand out.
The title track, #2 “Miracle,” showcases Evans’s strong baritone, with a hint of twang and heaps of emotion. Backed by drums, guitars, a strange wah-wah riff, and a few vocal harmonies, Evans sings within his range and sounds comfortable.
Track #3 “45” is either pandering or gross, and I don’t know which, but it’s basically a love song about a gun. I couldn’t tell if Evans really gives that much of a shit about guns or if he’s trying to appeal to his country audience, but my liberalism refused to back down and I got pretty turned off. The song is, however, played impeccably, and the mix is commendable, with Evans’s voice strong in the front and the instruments clear and thick behind him. There’s a nice Slash-esque bendy slide guitar solo about halfway through the song which fits perfectly. Producer Nick Jay did a fantastic job bringing these songs to life.
That’s basically how I feel about the album; musically, it’s very well done, every part fitting in, and Evans’s songwriting is classic but effective, with contrasting verses and catchy choruses. Some songs are based around a central riff (track #4 “Lesson Learned,” while others are based around a refrain (track #7 “I Wish She Was Mine”). However, lyrically, Evans seems further in the 70s than his musical influences suggest: “I miss that smile on her face/The way her lips used to taste/She’s everything a man could want/Such a beautiful face… I pray to God we cross paths/Because I want to see her so bad/She’s everything a man could want…She’s unpredictable/So unforgettable/I wish she was mine.”
God n’ guns n’ possessive misogyny. Evans sings about his love interest as if she’s a car he wants to buy (the clichéd metaphor would fit well in a follow-up song) and his one-dimensional approach to love made me queasy.
Speaking of which, my favourite track is #5 “Shape of Love,” which has a fucking awesome Dixieland horn section. Evans sings passionately about (slightly vapid) lyrics and the song is arranged wonderfully, with a well-placed halftime cymbal in the chorus leading into more horns. Evans sings about having a “big time crush” and it’s a nice softer side to display; he sounds more authentic and less like a douchebag.
I like the album. It’s recorded well, played well, catchy, and it has good melodies and harmonies. Evans sings well, and his band backs him up with aplomb. I give the album a 4/5 – it’s really musically right at the top – and while, if able, I would give Evans a 2/5 as a person, I don’t review albums using those criteria.
If he leaves his 45 at home and stops singing about women like objects, Evans will be on a surefire path to success. He’s really good at what he does.
4. Lesson Learned
5. Shape of Love
7. I Wish She Was Mine
9. Make It