Jens Lekman's second EP for Secretly Canadian in as many months is a concept EP revolving around the young Swedish songwriter's fascination with Rocky Dennis. In case you don't remember, Rocky Dennis was the kid in the movie Mask with the rare disorder that caused his head to be extremely disfigured. The first song on the EP, "Rocky Dennis' Farewell Song to the Blind Girl" is a very pretty song, with Lekman's clear tenor floating over melancholy sampled strings, gentle drums, and a sweet melody. His vocals on the record sound like a cross between Smiths-era Morrissey and solo-Morrissey, much more so than on the previous EP. Apart from a brief orchestrated instrumental, "Rocky Dennis in Heaven," the remaining songs are piano ballads that are nice but not exceptional. "Jens Lekman's Farewell Song to Rocky Dennis sums up his feelings about the character in a pleasant way with some great lyrics. "If You Ever Need a Stranger" deviates from the Rocky Dennis story to offer his services as a wedding singer and desperate lover ("I would cut off my right arm to be someone's lover"). The best thing about this EP is the promise it holds for the future. Now that Lekman has gotten Rocky Dennis out of his system, maybe he can turn his burgeoning musical talents to some other subject worthy of them. Like Chris Evert or soapbox derbys or Brian Krakow.
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AllMusic Review by Tim Sendra