David Fesette – S/T Demo EP

David Fesette
S/T Demo EP

A three-song demo packaged and promoted as if to sell the songs to other performers rather than to sell the music itself. But Fesette says this is his first solo effort, and so we’re going to review this work as if intended to be a complete project.
Fesette is a New Jersey musician who apparently has been playing music for some time, although he doesn’t include information about previous projects, choosing instead to focus entirely on this effort. On these three songs, Fesette plays guitar and sings and gets help from another musician on bass and drums. Sounding quite slickly produced for a demo, all three songs have a very tight, very melodious rock feel to them that will undoubtedly please fans of a more traditional rock-n-roll sensibility who yet appreciate something more resembling a power ballad.
For power ballad is the only way I could describe a song like “Misplaced.” Lyrics like “But I feel completely misplaced / every time I see this face / because I know the child inside / didn’t need such a long hard ride” won’t inspire anyone to tears but express the kind of typical rock fare. Fesette instead chooses to rely on his vocals, which are deep, thick, and quite nice. Yet just the inflection with which he sings makes me think some of his past projects involve heavy metal or at least 80’s hard rock. Oh, just listen to that wailing guitar solo in the middle of this song, and you’ll understand why I say that. “Remember Me” is a lighter rock tune with some nice, almost folk-like acoustic guitar, making it the best and most original of the three songs. “Tear Myself in Two” has a bit more of a roots rock feel, or perhaps a bit of a Southern style of rock, likely because of Fesette’s vocals. Not a bad song, but probably the weakest of the three.
To be fair, I can’t claim this is a negative review. Fesette has a very strong voice, and he has crafted three pleasing songs here. I’m guessing his roots in a heavier style of rock have been tempered through the years, for now he’s playing a more heartfelt style of rock that flirts with an adult contemporary format. Not my bag, but decent stuff, especially for a first solo effort. My advice: package your music for the music, not for promotion (assuming that this is the regular package and not just one used for promo copies), and stay off the artwork. The cover of Fesette holding a woman who merges with a guitar is interesting but mildly disturbing.