Save Me

Pat McGee

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Save Me Review

by James Christopher Monger

Halfway through Save Me, the fifth release from the Virginia-based Pat McGee Band, the first five songs vanish from the listener's memory, only to be replaced by six nearly identical cuts from the same cheesecloth. Working in the same realm of tedious FM conformity as Train and Goo Goo Dolls, the group utilizes endless variations of the three chords that inspire them to weave a harmless web of sound that irritates but never offends. McGee writes in the style of a simple bard in the thralls of love and deceit, frequently referencing his "bleeding heart" and the current "you" in his life with the selfish introspection of a high-school sophomore. As a wordsmith he seems capable of little else than romantic confrontation -- "you're touch has me so unover you" is possibly one of the worst lyrics ever written -- and the song titles themselves are templates of mid-tempo balladry -- "Don't Give Up," "Must Have Been Love" -- culled from mid-'80s Whitesnake records. Musically, the band displays its capable chops on upbeat rockers like "Annabel" and "Set Me Free," and the crisp, clean production gives the songs the kind of immediate appeal that sells records for a week or two, but the overall package is as disposable as the genre itself. In the end, Save Me will achieve immortality at the forgiving pulpit of syndication, as McGee has succeeded in crafting a soundtrack for young, beautiful, and empty television characters to make love to.

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