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On My Way

Ben Kweller

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Album Review

A smaller, simpler affair than his breakout album, Sha Sha, Ben Kweller's On My Way strips away the polished alt-rock production and emphasizes the singer/songwriter side of his music. There's nothing here as immediately infectious as the Sha Sha singles "Wasted and Ready" and "Commerce TX" were, and overall it's a more subdued album. However, this somewhat more mature approach is contrasted and balanced by Kweller's voice, which still sounds charmingly, vulnerably adolescent as he ventures further into his twenties. While there are still quite a few rock songs on the album, not all of them work; for every track like the stomping "The Rules," which is the closest Kweller gets to an angry young man stance, there's an "Ann Disaster," which has a fun start-stop structure but isn't especially distinctive otherwise. On My Way's slower songs fare better, particularly "Living Life" and "Different But the Same," both of which tap into Kweller's not-so-secret admiration for piano men like Elton John and, to a lesser extent, Billy Joel. Best of all, though, are On My Way's power pop-influenced songs, which are urgent, plaintive, and funny at the same time. "Need You Back" makes the most of the endearing cracks in Kweller's voice as well as his way with jangly guitars; "Down" comes the closest to Sha Sha's instant-gratification pop; and the bittersweet "Hear Me Out" is not only one of the best songs on the album, it's one of Kweller's best songs, period. Despite some slightly draggy moments, On My Way is still another solid effort.

Customer Reviews

BK is the man

Ben is awesome. He is talented. He is genuine.
This album is amazing. His lyrics and melodies are excellent. My favorites are On My Way and Hear Me Out, but I love EVERY song, especially Hospital Bed, The Rules, and I Need You Back.

Simply put, download this album and support the COOLEST man on the planet. He puts on a rocking live show as well.

bk knows whats up

the best songs all the album is believer, different but the same, and living life.

Biography

Born: June 16, 1981 in San Francisco, CA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Children are often raised in musical families, but few receive the same introduction to music as singer/songwriter Ben Kweller. Before he was old enough to enter kindergarten, a young Kweller emulated Nils Lofgren (who, during his time with Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band, would hang out with Kweller's father) by playing his toy version of the guitar. He also played piano, and by the age of eight, Kweller had begun penning his own songs. The following year, he received a nod of encouragement from...
Full Bio