Rob Szabo Late Bloomer/Sore Loser

On what he calls this six-track "double EP,” Toronto singer-songwriter and former Plasticine co-leader, Szabo shows off the two halves of his musical personality: the thoughtful balladeer and balls-out rocker. Although the approach is not dissimilar from his previous solo release, the grossly overlooked A Battery Of Tests, this relatively small dose makes it all the more powerful. Each track is perfectly constructed for its purpose, with the standout rocker being the ironic "We’re All Alcoholics.” The quieter tracks may stand up better in the long run though, probably since songs like "The Fact Remains” and "The Others” are the best that Szabo has written in his ten-plus year career, dating back to his days as resident guitar god with Kitchener, Ontario’s Groove Daddys. He’s planning a new full-length to be out before the end of the year, so if these tracks are any preview, it should finally give well-deserved exposure to his huge talents. (Basement Bar)