steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Andre Chrys

"Terminal Avenue" CD


Genre: country, roots-rock, singer / songwriter

Sep 5 2008

"All I know is, it must be good for something." Such is the enlightened Weltanschauung of philosophy grad-school graduate Andre Chrys. On Terminal Avenue, Chrys unleashes his feelings of milquetoasty acceptance in the form of eleven tracks of depressive "thinking man's roots rock." This means doe-eyed country ballads and vaguely bluesy numbers. They are precisely and competently executed. Sadly, the thinking man's lyrics sometimes recall a bummed-out Tom Scholz-Enya hybrid.

Chrys has a gift for applying his higher education by making big universalist observations and phrasing them in profound-sounding paradoxical ways, but the results of his mother-goosery are largely predictable and trite. Chrys is most convincing when he really means what he says, like in "The Modification Song," a punchy take on image-consciousness from a certified aesthete. He's particularly on his game in "Guardian Angel (You've Been Drinking On The Job)." That song's stumbling tone casts his maunderings in a self-deprecating light, with charming results that might even make you smile. Still, Terminal Avenue's overriding tone is vanilla, passive and defeated. The most pleasant track is the cryptically titled one about the generic bipolar girlfriend. The most resolute? That would be "Terminal Avenue" itself. It's a suicide song. Duh.

andre chrys' myspace


Rhett Alexander

[Vitals: 11 tracks, distributed by CD Baby, released 2004]