317 by Michael Tyler (Reviver Records)
Michael Tyler is an exciting up-and-coming artist who presents the perfect amalgamation of pop and country, encompassing the term crossover in every sense of the word. 317 is the name of Tyler’s debut recording, and it’s destined to garner the artist a good deal of attention. Not only does 317 represent the number of miles from Tyler’s hometown in Thayer, MO to his first apartment in Nashville, but the title of his new album also indicates the lucky release date of March 17th! Another glorious footnote could be added to the 317 reference, as Tyler made his debut at the legendary Grand Ole Opry to commemorate the March 17th unveiling of the album. With all songs co-written by Michael Tyler and a wondrous voice that conveys the lyrics with a wide-eyed conviction, 317 is destined to breakthrough in a nothing short of an epic way.
317 opens with the fond recollections of Here’s To The Nights, superbly sentimental and packed with hit single potential. Crazy Last Night is a freewheeling anthem featuring a banjo, whistling, and a wonderfully memorable sing-along chorus that will jangle in your head for ages, Long Drive Home is brimming with the excitement and anticipation Tyler conveys very well with his vibrantly expressive vocals. They Can’t See exudes a country boy romanticism that is superbly infectious with its “I’m in love with everything that they can’t see” inflections. Love Myself presents the power of positive thinking within a relationship that is clearly going South. Songs About Missouri is a reflective track about “the green eyed girls and highway 30” in Tyler’s home state that envelopes the senses with its stunningly picturesque lyrics.
Hey Mama is classic country in its finest hour about taking the “right one” home to meet the family. “Girl when you’re ready we could paint it on the Hollywood sign, in California so the whole world know that you’re mine,” is the commencement of the grand and romantic Secret, where the proclamation of “If you’ll be my Marilyn, I’ll be your JFK” is nothing short of euphoric. And then the next two songs Good At Being Young and Play That Party Song shows an artist who know who rock and roll with the very best of them. This is not surprising that Tyler knows how to rock it in style, since the first concert he ever attended was a Cinderella/Poison double header! And then closing out the 317 journey is the pensive yet heartfelt Interstate, leaving the listener with visions of travelling the great highways of this wonderful and thoroughly unpredictable life.
With charismatic vocals and the self-penned material to back it all up, there is no doubt that Michael Tyler is on the verge of pop country superstardom. And now with the release of the 11 timeless cuts featuring within 317, expect Tyler to massively appeal to music fans all over the world in this prologue of what is sure to be a brilliant and insightful career.
(Review by Ken Morton)
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