Prolific songwriters are annoying. You hear about guys like Kevin Devine and you say, “Wow! Can’t wait to get into this,” and suddenly eight years go by and you’ve missed nine albums and two side-projects (see also, Ryan Adams).
Despite some familiarity with his catalogue (mostly the Bubblegum and Bulldozer albums), I fully admit that I should be a bigger fan of Kevin Devine than I am. Here’s my reasoning:
My name is also Kevin. [√]
I happen to look like Kevin. [√]
I’m a long-time, bitter Brand New fan. [√]
I’ve seen Kevin live three times and he’s always amazing. [√ and √]
What happens is this: I see Kevin Devine in concert, I walk away in awe, and then I listen to his records and come away disappointed. Call it the “Curse of the Great Live Band,” but I find his studio stuff often fails to capture the spirit, energy and vulnerability of what I hear on stage.
There’s also the problem that his recordings sound like crap.
But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s talk Instigator. (more…)