Review: Andrew St. James – The Big Ole Veronica Apology Record

We are living in a country governed by a generation that was told kids should be seen, not heard. With the exception of the few revolutionary lyricists and musicians of decades past, the idea that the younger generation doesn’t know what’s good for them, or their emotions aren’t relevant is ramping up to come swinging back like a wrecking ball.

Adding the next installment of his generational statement, Andrew St. James has released The Big Ole Veronica Apology Record.

While it may seem much of this record is pointed to heartfelt lyrics of an impassioned individual, if you don’t focus entirely on the lyrics, you’ll quickly begin to see the larger impression being left by this kid from California.

The Retro-Folk style of Doldurms (2013) gave way to a more sonically full sound with The Shakes (2014), but in Veronica, Andrew St. James establishes what will be looked back on in years from now as the Andrew St. James sound. Eleven blissfully enjoyable tracks lean in and out of echoing folk and well-paced compilations of reflection. With no apologies, justifiably so, St. James masters his guitar to paint the horizon, sky, and stars that blanket his lyrical assemblies, transfixing the listener on the modern-classic, melodic journey they embark on track after track. Undeniably quality listens in virtually every track, “I Do What You Want Me To” quite possibly encapsulates the record best of all. The swaying, airy strum exists in layers of a deeply emotional cavern that almost instantly means something very specific, yet different in each, listener as it asks “how many moments have you lived and then forgotten?”

To ignore the younger generations is not only ignoring those who are going to run the world when everyone else is old and unable to do anything for themselves, but it is to throw a shroud over a generation that is not just contributing, but has some amazing ideas. One such idea is Andrew St. James’ latest, which erupts in a menagerie of passion and chaos, soaring in a dance amongst soul-filled vocals while playing between analog produced tendencies that are pure musical beauty. The Big Ole Veronica Apology Record dances and weaves in vintage style while cerebrally captivating in lyrical prowess. Don’t see Andrew St. James, hear Andrew St. James.

Greg is a co-founder and regular contributor of Nanobot Rock.

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