On Maniac, Boston singer/songwriter Don Lennon debuted his quirky style of folk-pop. His reserved yet playful brand of pop is instantly evident with the hand claps and carefree mood of "Definition of Love." The songs are often awkward in their degree of straightforwardness, which is unusually refreshing. Lennon's song topics are simple, ranging from college studies ("Grad Student") to friendship ("Best Friends Forever" and "I Need Friends") to dancing ("Dance Music" and "Turn the Living Room Into a Dance Floor") to parties ("Party All the Time," "Party Coordinator," and "Party in September"). The songs are all simple, consisting of Lennon on guitar, keyboards, and vocals. The straightforward nature of the songs are comparable to a more reserved Jonathan Richman. The clean guitar line on "Cool to be Alone" serves as the foundation for Lennon's heart-on-his-sleeve approach to songwriting, most evident on this track. He reminisces on piano in a Ben Folds manner on "Take Back the Night." In the end, the disc is an enjoyable collection of simple pop songs from a musician struggling valiantly to find his voice. The album was recorded at Studio 7 in Boston.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Cramer