Those readers with a sharp eye will recall seeing this cover in the past and note that I've been slipping in L.E.O. tracks wherever possible. Simply put, this is one of the finest releases I've heard in some time AND bolsters Angry Old Man Rule #3: Quit ripping off the '80's and go about ripping off the '70's!
In this scenario, the overarching influence is E.L.O., but L.E.O. (get it?) aren't merely ripping off Jeff Lynne's stylistics and production nuances, just merely incorporating them as their own in a (semi-)modern context and writing entirely new music that feels as familiar as an LP whose grooves are worn beyond warmth.
Not Lame's blog had some background a little while back, "Among the collaborators assembled here as L.E.O. are vocalist Andy Sturmer, from nineties power pop-icon Jellyfish; singer-guitarist Mike Viola, formerly of the Candy Butchers and co-writer of the Oscar-nominated movie theme "That Thing You Do!"; multi-platinum producer John Fields; Papas Fritas founder/producer Tony Goddess; Matt Mahaffey of the acclaimed one-man-band Self; Jason Scheff, vocalist and bassist for the legendary band Chicago; singer-songwriter Paula Kelley; Black Crowes drummer Steve Gorman; and even the Hanson brothers. This wildly eclectic crew was brought together by Boston pop auteur Bleu (William James McAuley III), who whimsically decided to embark on this unique project four years ago and managed to cajole his many far-flung pals to join him for the ride."
L.E.O. - Goodbye Innocence (Mp3)
L.E.O. - Ya Had Me Goin' (Mp3)
L.E.O. - Distracted (Mp3)
L.E.O. - Nothin' Will Ever Change (Mp3)
L.E.O. - Sukaz Are Born Every Minute (Mp3)