The Roadside Graves

You Won't Be Happy with Me

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On the Garden State Parkway, Metuchen, NJ, home of the Roadside Graves, is about 30 miles north of Freehold, home of Bruce Springsteen, but on the band's 2010 EP You Won't Be Happy with Me, the distance seems shorter. Singer/lyricist John Gleason leads his band through some distinctly Springsteen-like songs here, notably the seven-minute, multi-part "Liv Tyler." Gleason's lyrics are simpler and more repetitive than Springsteen's, and his wheezy tenor is more of a cross between Bono and Thom Yorke. But the guitars of Rich Zilg and Jeremy Benson have a familiar ringing sound, and Johnny Piatkowski's keyboards occupy the same place in the arrangements as those of Roy Bittan and the late Danny Federici in the E Street Band. On this six-song, 23-minute disc, acoustic numbers alternate with the Springsteenian rockers, notably "Heart," on which guest singer Debra Disbrow takes lead vocals over an acoustic guitar. But the band's rock & roll ambitions are clear, even in this small sample.

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