Published on January 27th, 2013 | by greg0
Sonny Smith: 100 Records Vol. 3:: Review
Sonny Smith of San Franciscan garage outfit Sonny & The Sunsets began a massive musical undertaking in 2010 that would encompass his life for the next two years. Smith set out to write 100 songs and perform them under the guise of 100 different fictional bands for his 100 Records project. To ensure that the project would maintain cohesion, Smith also enlisted visual artists to create album covers for each of his various bands and he created a backstory for each one. While the 100 Songs project is a remarkable achievement, there’s no suspension of disbelief in this project. No matter what I do, I can always recognize Sonny Smith’s vocals and I always place 100 Records: Vol. 3 as a late 20th Century copy.
Sure, Smith alternates genres and song writing styles but nothing from the 100 Records project sounds like it was recorded in the 1960’s. The music contained on 100 Records is somewhat bland and inauthentic, there’s no spark to be found here. 100 Records feels heavy and its workman-like recreation of the Nuggets era is unnerving because of its obvious copying. There’s no real emotion here, it’s just a band going through the motions with a to-do checklist in their hands and an overzealous front man. Maybe I’ve missed the point and I’m being too hard on Sonny Smith, but I’d prefer the originals over this project.