Some observers may have thought that the teen pop fad that accompanied the turn of the millennium and included the likes of Britney Spears, Backstreet Boys, and *NSync was more about being cute and making the right dance moves than it was about music. But Jordan Witzigreuter, who was heading for middle school at the time, seems to have identified it as a golden age of music and aspired to grow up to be Max Martin, the Swedish songwriter/producer responsible for many of the hits. Witzigreuter hasn't quite grown up yet, but he has come out of his Indiana basement in the person of the one-man band the Ready Set, and I'm Alive, I'm Dreaming is his second album expressing his love affair for late-‘90s and early-‘2000s teen pop. It's just that, in Witzigreuter's hands (and voice), all of the music comes from one person. The Ready Set features bouncy beats and hooks aplenty on every tune, and the vocals are arranged just like those of a boy band, except that all the voices (many employing obvious Auto-Tune effects) are those of Witzigreuter, who possesses a boyish tenor (or is able to replicate one on his computer). So, the voices overlap like an audio hall of mirrors, and the music never stops … until it does, usually abruptly, as if a plug had been pulled. Witzigreuter still doesn't have his craft quite down, but he's certainly on his way, and as Tom Scholz showed when he invented the band Boston in his basement back in the ‘70s, there's gold to be mined in the solitary approach that sounds like a bunch of people playing and singing.
AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann