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Move By Yourself

Donavon Frankenreiter

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Album Review

Donavon Frankeneiter recorded his first record under the friendly auspices of his buddy Jack Johnson's patronage. The self-titled album from 2004 was a quite enjoyable sun-kissed record that sometime suffered from being laid-back to the point of inertia. The first track from the follow-up lets the listener know that Frankenreiter is following a slightly different path, as "Move by Yourself" is a funky, uptempo rocker punctuated by a bubbling clavinet (think early-'70s Stevie) and a barn-burning guitar solo. The track has more energy by itself than the whole last record did put together. Now, you may initially be put off if you were a fan of the previous album, but the same basic underpinnings that made the last album so good are still here, like Frankenreiter's mellow wisp of a voice, his easygoing lyrics, and most of all an enveloping warmth that makes the disc as smooth as a summer nap in the shade. The added interest in arrangements shows through on songs like the string-laden, wah-wah-laced, vibraphone-dipped "The Way It Is," which happily brings to mind early Hall & Oates; the lowdown and nasty "Fool," which sports some gritty gospel backing vocals; and the dramatic and dynamic "Let It Go." These touches and the overall boost in energy and commitment add punch and flavor to Move by Yourself that the last album lacked. The main bread and butter of his style still remains the low-key and loose midtempo tunes, sweet as strawberry jam, like "These Arms," "Girl Like You," "Beautiful Day," and "By Your Side." Add up all the positives and you end up with one heck of an album that will impress jam band lovers with its lazy lope, surprise people with its unhurried soul, and make fans of peaceful and easy but not innocuous songcraft quite happy. Hopefully, Frankenreiter is still pals with Jack Johnson on a personal level, but breaking away from him musically worked out just fine.

Customer Reviews

DF Headed in a different direction

For those of you who are a fan of Donavon Frankenreiter's self-titled debut album, you may be unhappy or pleasantly surprised to see DF heading in a completely different direction on his sophomore cut "Move By Yourself." Except for one track ("Beautiful Day"), this album sees the departure for Frankenreiter of not only Jack Johnson's label (Brushfire), but also his acoustic surf-style in favor of something a little more daring: R&B and Funk. To DF's credit, he succeeds on most of his album with songs like "That's Too Bad" and the title track. If most people are like me, then they will probably enjoy the new direction that DF is taking his musical career, but also miss what many thought this album was going to be; another set of songs that could have been the soundtrack to endless summer days at the beach.

too much!!!!!! Why can't people keep it simple?

His last album that had a sound you want listen to after a long day at work or at the beach, Donavon really added to the "Jack Johnson- Ben Harper" sound we have began to love. His last album had this pure sound of a man and his guitar oozing with the feeling in every pluck of his strings and sound of his melodic voice. With this new album, which I ran out and bought without giving a listen to, I was shocked to hear the opposite of what I was looking for. He starts out with a Jamiraquai style of sound and and really let me down. There are some decent tracks, but overall this album is over produced and lacks the purity of his last effort.

" It Gives Life Flavor and Makes Stuff Pop"

Donavon is a guy with a lot of soul and whenever you get an artist creating records consisting of the simple passions of life, it's good stuff. This record is just that. A soothing, yet poppy masterpiece. You can taste hints of soul, blues, folk, and maybe even some Bee Gee's style disco. Like the Mona Lisa with a Picasso twist. Enjoy. Saucy. Bon appetit!

Biography

Born: December 10, 1972 in Downey, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Before launching a solo career as the protégé of Jack Johnson, Donavon Frankenreiter began his professional life as a surfer. Born in Southern California on December 10, 1972, he landed a sponsorship with Billabong as a young teenager and moved to Hawaii when he was 14. There, he rented a home from the parents of Jack Johnson, a fellow surfer with an untapped musical talent. The two became fast friends, learning guitar together and hanging out between trips to the beach. Music was always a hobby...
Full Bio

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