Jeremy Poland & Lantz Dale - Timeless Soul
After nearly 150 live performances in 2016, Timeless Soul’s seven songs prove that Jeremy Poland and Lantz Dale have their act honed to a sharp edge. The songs on their debut release as a duo are well crafted, sincere from start to finish, and glow with easy-going musical excellence more complex to pull off than it ever sounds. The thing that makes this work so well, even in the confines of a recording studio, is musical and songwriting chemistry. Poland and Dale are tuned into the same sonic wavelength from the outset and their vision for how this collection should turn out remains remarkably consistent throughout the entirety of Timeless Soul. It’s this steadiness of intent and the ability to manifest it with rich, rewarding material that makes Timeless Soul stand apart from similar efforts in today’s scene. It’s hard to pin down, as well – there’s elements of Americana, rock, and pop running through it in equal measure and no one style ever really gains the upper hand for long.
The first track has a strong pop oriented sweep. “All Yours Now” has personality as well, particularly when the chorus hits, and the longing communicated by the lyrics and singing feels quite playful as well as quite real. The acoustic instruments are recorded in a very intimate way, like they closely miked, and the singing has the same intimate vibe. “In the Light” has a more deliberative air, only changing up the musical direction deep into the second half of the song, but that change is handled quite artfully and puts this performance over the top for me. Poland and Dale successfully shift gears with the song “All Over Again” moving from the pop rock and folky workouts of the album’s opener into a much more musically challenging track that they handled with considerable aplomb. It’s near reggae like feel makes it stand out on Timeless Soul and shows their versatility as well.
“I’m a Wreck”, however, stands apart. It’s the most clearly conceived song on Timeless Soul in that it makes the best use of dynamics and doesn’t seem to have a single wasted word or note. The intimacy is greater here than ever before thanks to the added fragility Poland and Dale bring to this standalone performance. “Where Did It Go?” will remind a lot of listeners of the opener and it’s clear they are created from the same school of thought, but there’s less of a contrast between the verses and choruses on this later song. The final track on Timeless Soul is the title number and it affords both Poland and Dale to stretch out a bit in the effort to leave behind a lasting statement. Very little of Poland’s avowed R&B and pop influences come through here and the song sounds much more like a product of the singer/songwriter school than any sort of pop confection. It ends the release on an appropriately beautiful note.
9 out of 10 stars