Kyle Andrews – Real Blasty

Kyle Andrews - Real Blasty

Kyle Andrews - Real Blasty

There’s a ton of alternative pop music out there, and because of how easy it is to record this stuff in your own home studio we keep getting more and more of it. With such a glut of this kind of music, how do you make yourself stand out from the rest? What makes one such recording better than another? 

Nashville’s Kyle Andrews has made a couple of albums now and his latest, Real Blasty, comes out on his own label rather than the Badman label (which released prior material). It’s a testament to his productivity, too, because he basically did all of it himself (instruments, recording, production). And it sounds good. It’s got some nice treatments and touches, as on the driving “Wavering Between the Real and the Abstract,” whose cacophonous ending has layers of sounds that resolve to a studio-trickery ending. More in keeping with the rest of the album, “Put Your Hands Up” shows off Andrews’ hook-based ballad sensibilities. Consisting largely of acoustic guitar, piano, and vocals, the song’s message is that Andrews is here to help: “Do you need somebody to hold you? / Of course you do.”

The electronic elements infusing “I Wanted To Paint a Rainbow” add some variety and texture to Real Blasty’s tunesmithing. The lyrics almost everywhere on the record are first-person and a bit shopworn, though, which might or might not have to do with this being such a one-person undertaking. Sometimes bandmates make decent editors, after all? That said, “Cut and Paste” is a preternaturally radio-friendly achievement and lines like “I wake in a mourning state / I miss with a nauseous ache” show something of a poetic bent. “Polar Bear” is a sprightly number whose grand keyboard/string backgrounds elevate it to a hopeful place.

To follow up on the earlier rhetorical question about how to make a name for yourself, Kyle Andrews could very well be on his way to finding out. If Real Blasty isn’t exactly a standout, it’s at least a a cut above the mass of other such recordings out there.0