Steve Katz - "Barricades" CD EP Review (Singer/Songwriter) ~ BrooklynRocks: NYC Music Blog

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Steve Katz - "Barricades" CD EP Review (Singer/Songwriter)

Steve Katz - 'Barricades' CD EP Review (Singer/Songwriter)
Belgium-to-NYC transplant Steve Katz is a traditional singer/songwriter whose strong vocals and rich, narrative lyrics falls somewhere between Cat Stevens (who Katz cites as an inspiration) and Damien Rice. Katz just released a five-track debut EP, “Barricades”, and he writes on the CD cover “Barricades can scare, challenge and stop us from achieving goals. They are everywhere and often invisible. I've gone through many barricades in my time—physical and emotional ones that stood between me and my goals. Had I failed to go through any of them, this cd would never have been made.

The disc starts with “Thrive” which is an upbeat roots-rock number which doesn’t let melodic, ringing guitars take away from Katz’s strong and clear vocals. The message of this song is one of hope and redemption and Katz describes the song as “an inspiring tale of being pulled from the depths of despair by a special person in our lives”. The second track, "Today I Saw Hope", follows with a similar message of hope and redemption but Katz changes gears musically. This song is an acoustic number with subtle backing vocals from Keren Tayar coming in to fill in the spaces. Katz states that this song “was inspired by volunteer work in a very poor area of Knoxville, TN, where two elderly African-American women feed thousands of hungry people every week”. The title track, “Barricades”, drifts too far into “adult contemporary” territory as the FM-lite music blunts the impact of Katz’s vocals but Katz redeems himself with “Fair”. This later track is a mellow rock number that complements Katz’s vocals with sustained guitar notes, soft drums and a mellow (almost jazz) bass line. The disc’s final track, “A Modern Tale”, is a melancholy breakup song where Katz reaches for some high falsetto notes while telling a richly descriptive tale of love gone astray.

Steve has a couple of local shows coming up:

August 8 - Freddy's, Brooklyn, NY - 10:30PM
August 9 - Gizzi's, 16 W. 8th St

The song isn't on the CD but it should give a good indication of what Katz sounds like live.

Steve Katz