Jason Vigil,
Heart Gone Sober
(independent, 2006)

Denver based singer-songwriter Jason Vigil has a great first release with Heart Gone Sober. With 10 tracks lasting just under 40 minutes, Jason belts his heart out on this self-produced CD. The music can mostly be classified as alternative rock, but there are folk elements upon occasion.

Title track "Heart Gone Sober" has some lyrics that demonstrate Jason's songwriting skills. If you have ever been dumped, you can probably relate to "Here I go again, make it on my own / Now it's all too clear I am all alone / Just get through the day, try not to think of you / Afraid to be without the half of me called you." I like that last line. It is succinct and to the point. Musicwise, the song starts off at a faster pace than it ends. The beginning is more rock, the ending more folk.

You might have heard "Need Your Space" on the radio. This is one of the better songs on the album. But with so many decent tracks on the CD, I might be able to pick out a top eight tracks. Parts of the melody on this piece bring old Jars of Clay songs to mind. Jason demonstrates his vocal range on this selection more than some of the other tracks. From the title of the song, I thought it was a break-up song with someone saying they needed space. Instead, this song is about the start of a relationship. The singer needs to get into the space of the person they are addressing.

One of the more rocking tracks on the album, "So Tell Me" has a simple piano hook to grab you, a smooth guitar riff to real you in and Jason's vocals to keep you captive. Lyrically, this song is more simple than many. The chorus is pretty much "Don't turn away" repeated many, many times. One of the stanzas: "So tell me, are you the same / Obsession is now your name / If your dreams, they don't come true / Remember, you are, you are still you." Not much to it, but still, this is a catchy tune.

Jason wrote all the songs he sings and plays guitar as well. His band on the album includes Cale Hand (drums), Chris Jaramillo (bass and co-producer), Justin Miller (keyboards, piano and organ), Eric Garcia (percussion) and Tony C'de Baca (guitars).

Jason Vigil is one of the better singer-songwriters I've enjoyed in the past year. His music is groomed to a more mainstream alternative college-rock audience, which makes it rather accessible. It is more rock than what a lot of Rambles readers might be looking for, but over the years as Rambles has spread to a wider audience, the range of CDs being reviewed has also increased. His website will let you sample all the tracks I mentioned plus a few more. It's worth a visit.

[ visit the artist's website ]

review by
Wil Owen

29 September 2007

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