Say Something Stupid

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John Connor is Messyheads, and this seven-song maxi-CD clocks in at over 52 minutes. "Say Something Stupid" is a good song, though Connor's voice wanders on- and off-key, disrupting the listener's look into his creative mind. The CD cover and homepage show a lot of passion for the project, and the music is interesting, with "The End of All Things" as solid as the opening track. What would improve this music immensely is the addition of more musicians. Daniel Rey adds keyboards and Dante Piacenza a guitar solo on "The End of All Things," but mostly it is John Connor bringing his vision to life. The band's web page ( has a plethora of retailers carrying the disc, but the limited production will keep this firmly on underground radio. At six minutes and 37 seconds, the second track holds itself back. "Don't Care" changes direction slightly, while "The Answer Is You" totally rocks out with a wave of chaotic sounds, including Paul McQuillan's dynamic leads. Thirty years after the debut of the Velvet Underground, independent artists continue to employ Lou Reed's sensibilities, and Connor does this in both attitude and vocal style. The intensity keeps up for close to nine minutes. What doesn't happen is the cosmic explosion that was the Velvet Underground's "White Light/White Heat," and that seems to be the direction in which the song is heading. The "Sister Lover's Mix" of "Say Something Stupid" is interesting, but not as refined as the first take, and it shows that Janet Jackson isn't the only person obsessed with America's "Ventura Highway" sound. "Take My Life" is the strangest tune on a strange disc -- sci-fi techno grunge that would be great if it was cut with more than just eight tracks. Maybe the artist is censoring himself, but on track seven, there is silence for the first three minutes. "Sh*teater" is a singer/songwriter conclusion to the album which shows much promise, but definitely illustrates the need of a producer. The disc shows heart and that Connor may be an artist worth watching.

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