By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
Even though Dan Dyer was born in East Texas and now resides in Austin, his musical roots are firmly set in his former residence of Missouri, reflecting the rhythm and blues tradition commonly associated with St. Louis. Vibrant, loose and engaging, his vocals recall the likes of W.C. Handy, Stevie Wonder and Lenny Kravitz. Indeed, Kravitz produced Dyer's major label debut What Lies Beneath and the multi-pierced and tattooed one's influence is all over Dyer's recently released, self-titled sophomore effort. Full of appealing textures and brooding dynamics, songs such as "Love Chain," "I Walk on Guilded Splinters" and "Stop for a Second" are gospel in nature but rock/soul in execution. Funky when he needs to be, reflective when it suits the moment, Dyer is capable of transcending easy categorization, even moving beyond the simple comparisons to Kravitz.
It's one thing to claim soul as an influence and quite another to actually put the classic authority of Al Green and Sly Stone to proper use. Dan Dyer sings with an instinctive urgency that incorporates elements of country, blues and soul, tying things together with what's universal in the best of each genre: intensity.
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