Reeve Oliver – S/T

Reeve Oliver is the band you’d love to hate but just can’t. Nearly every gimmick you’ll find on this self-titled debut album has been lifted straight from the alternative rock airwaves of the mid 90s, rendering the band almost entirely unoriginal, and to make matters worse these guys are seemingly incapable of writing meaningful lyrics. Nevertheless, Reeve Oliver’s first foray into the world of rock is undeniably easy on the ears. With a firm nod to the trailblazers of alternative rock and watertight musicianship, Reeve Oliver managed to make a solid albeit easily forgettable debut.

Having grown up on Weezer, Foo Fighters, Green Day, and all those other bands in that vein that no one cares to remember, Reeve Oliver dispenses some serious nostalgia. These guys successfully form a patchwork of their various influences, and its not hard to point out which well their tapping at any given moment, yet whereas songs like the Foo Fighters “Everlong” burrowed their way into the back of your skull, Reeve Oliver’s work gets off the bus two stops before memorable. This is due in large part to the lackluster lyrics that while generally not horrible, really don’t do anything for me. For example, the third track, “Young and Dumb,” which is easily my favorite song on the album, could be so much more if lines like, “I wish you were here / and I wish you could hear / but you disappear” didn’t suck dry the emotional feeling the song is working towards. Despite the lyrical baseness, singer Sean O’Donnell’s smooth voice is very pleasing to the ear, and the music is crisp, clear, and every beat hits hard.

With the exception of the obligatory acoustic track and a couple pointless filler tracks, Reeve Oliver is always enjoyable. Whether they’re playing an upbeat jam or something more somber, these guys sounds great thanks to talent and spot-on production. Regardless of the flawed lyrics, Reeve Oliver’s self-titled debut is a worthwhile listen, just don’t expect to be humming it all day because, like just about anything on the menu at Taco Bell, this baby will have started working its way out of your system before you’ve even finished it.