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The Other Side of America

Release Date: 05.09.06
Record label: SBV Records
Genre(s): Movies, Film Scores, Musicals, Etc.


Overflows with the passion
by: Tim Wardyn

The Other Side of America Rock label: SBV Records released: 05.09.06 our score: 3.5 out of 5.0

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  Overflows with the passion by: Tim Wardyn

Grab a seat at the table, tuck in your napkin and bring your "damn the man" attitude because honest and biting lyrics over basic roots-rock rhythms is what singer/songwriter Steve Vansak serves up on his third disc "The Other Side of America."

Vansak comes off as a generic early-days Elvis Costello. His voice has the urgency and passion that Costello has patented, especially on the opener "Come Home."

Each track has a little explanation in the liner notes which helps put everything into perspective and gives an insight into the state of mind he was in while recording each track. The straight-forward Tom Petty-ish "The Patriots" seems to be a direct jab at Republicans as the explanation says: "There’s a large group of folks who aim to co-opt everything American and claim it as their own and are on the attack of those who dare to question their ‘values’ or are just different. Right wing talk radio is one of the many breeding grounds for these self-proclaimed patriots." Mr. Bush, Mr. Rumsfeld, Mr. Cheney, Mr. Limbaugh are you all listening? The last lines are spoken, "For the Patriot Act/ And against the Patriot Act/ It reveals a fanaticism."

"The Other Side of America," "Heart of the City," and "Living in Me" also have the same intense change- the-world mindset, but the magnum opus for him is "King/Queen" and the precursor "Devil in Me/ Angel in You" and sister song "Angelina."

"The Other Side of America" overflows with the passion that made artists like Costello and Bruce Springsteen famous. Is Vansak the next in line to break out and have a decades-long career? He’s not there yet, but he’s well on his way.