American Idol star Jason Castro’s self-titled debut album features catchy pop-rock melodies and heart-felt lyrics.
Castro’s rich voice is superb, although the album runs short with only eight tracks.
The opening track, “Let’s Just Fall in Love Again,” is a playful song about getting back together with a former love interest. While track two doesn’t stand out as much as the first, the next song, “That’s What I’m Here For,” is one of the best on the album. It features mellow acoustic guitar, lush string arrangements and charming harmonies.
“Love Uncompromised” is an up-beat song with a little country flavor followed by “Closer,” a catchy rock song. “You Can Always Come Home” is a somber duet with Serena Ryder. Castro and Ryder’s voices complement each other nicely over a mix of piano, acoustic guitar and strings.
The album ends with a cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah.” Castro sings with perfect technique and inflections in all the right places, but it sounds more contrived than emotive. While it’s not a bad version of the song, it lacks the raw emotion of Jeff Buckley’s rendition.
Castro’s debut album is sure to please those who followed him on American Idol, but it is unlikely that he will hook many new fans. While his upbeat sound is easy to listen to, the song writing doesn’t stand out as anything new or innovative, and most of the songs lose their catchy appeal after a few listens. Castro’s impressive voice may not be enough to make a lasting impression on the music scene.
Danielle Peloquin may be contacted at email@example.com.
“Jason Castro” by Jason Castro
Rating: 2.5/4 stars
Released: April 13
Label: Atlantic Records
Produced by: Eric Rosse