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Arthur Channel's "Arthur Channel" Album Review

October 12, 2013

Arthur Channel
Arthur Channel
The End Records

Recorded after rookie singer/guitarist Jon Greene sent a three-song demo to former Chili Peppers and Pearl Jam drummer Jack Irons and Wallflowers bassist Greg Richling, Arthur Channel is replete with tremulous verses, soaring choruses, ambient guitars, and dashes of discord. Richling produced the effort, but Alain Johannes sonic fingerprints abound, too. Tapped by Queens of the Stone Age and others for his 6-string prowess as much as his multi-instrumental abilities, Johannes—who mixed the album, played guitar on "New Life," and contributed various instrumentation to other tracks—employs his je ne sais quoi with timbres and tonalities to imbue the songs with a vibe that’s at once sweetly mesmerizing and ghostly. Session veteran Lyle Workman contributes stellar guitar work throughout, including the swirling, Holdsworth-for-the-masses solo on “Vapor.” More dynamic tempos and a little more attitude here and there couldn’t hurt, but Irons and Richling wisely let Greene’s catchy songs, somber-yet-hopeful lyrics, and rich voice—think Incubus’ Brandon Boyd meets Remy Zero’s Cinjun Tate—carry the album. This is what your local stations should be playing.

Must-Hear Tracks: “Thirst of the Universe” and “New Life”