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Two of Everything

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Album Review

On his second solo album, former Greenhornes and Soledad Brothers guitarist Brian Olive once again offers an eclectic variety of R&B-based sounds, but his approach has changed just a bit. For Two of Everything, Olive enlisted the production expertise of Dan Auerbach from the Black Keys, and while the album still has a solid, bluesy foundation, the songs here sound cooler and slinkier, with echoes of vintage funk and groove jazz cropping up in the mix, and a good bit more refinement audible in the melodies and performances compared to his self-titled debut. Two of Everything doesn't sound like Olive has turned his back on his blues-based earlier work, but he is veering in a different direction; the results sometimes suggest a Midwestern take on Northern soul as Olive and Auerbach throw just a little pop polish on Olive's vocals and let the pianos and saxophones give the music a subtle but distinct retro feel, even as the steady pulse of several tunes nods politely to hip-hop. But even as Two of Everything travels down a smoother road than its precursor, it still sounds organic, committed, and heartfelt, and Olive sure knows how to write a memorable tune; "Strange Attracter" faces a chunky, T. Rex-style guitar figure against an insistent piano-and-drum pattern that fills up the dancefloor; "Black Sliding Soul" suggests an unlikely but effective collaboration between NRBQ and Mark Ronson; "Left Side Rock" bounces hard Southern funk rhythms off aggressive horn samples, and "Lost in Dreams" is a beautifully languid bit of stoned soul love pleading. With Two of Everything, Brian Olive is two for two in making smart, distinctive albums that push his blues and R&B influences in unexpected, compelling directions, matching and building on the strength of his debut.

Customer Reviews

A bewitching album of rock, soul, glam, psych and more

Brian Olive’s second album continues to showcase the multi-instrumentalist’s musical breadth. Singing, writing and playing piano, guitar, and woodwinds, his music is based in rock and soul, but stretches out with superb touches of psych, glam, jazz, blues, R&B, exotica and even a hint of the musical stage. As on his debut release, Olive interweaves his influences, evoking an Eastern feel with a guitar and tone generator solo on the funky “Left Side Rocking,” layering brooding woodwinds on the thick drum backing of “Traveling,” threading his flute into the deep bass soul of “Go on Easy,” and evoking Detroit-era Motown with the title track’s melody. The instrumental reprise of “Two of Everything” sounds like something from Edgar Winter’s glam period, and the tone generator on “Strange Attractor” hangs niftily between the backwards riff of the Beatles’ “Baby You’re a Rich Man” and a bagpipe. The lyrics are poetic and image-heavy, but rather than trying to decipher the sentences, listeners will groove on the ease with which the words express the melodies; more extemporaneous thought than composed character and story. Recorded in Cincinnati and Nashville, and co-produced by the Black Key’s Dan Auerbach, ths is an album you don’t just listen to, you feel it. [©2011 hyperbolium dot com]

!!!!

Amazing

Not good...

This album sounds like it's straight out of a 99-cent cut-out bin from 1969.

Biography

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Brian Olive already had an impressive career working with some of the more notable figures on the Midwest garage rock and punk blues scene before he reinvented himself with his first solo album in 2009. An Ohio native, Olive got his start in music when he was in high school, playing guitar in a band called Us and Them that would evolve into the celebrated garage rock combo the Greenhornes. Olive appeared on the group's first two albums, 1999's Gun for You and 2000's The Greenhornes, but parted ways...
Full Bio
Two of Everything, Brian Olive
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