Dennis Ellsworth Things Change
Published May 11, 2018There are moments on Things Change when Dennis Ellsworth seems to be channelling power pop greats, from Elvis Costello to Cheap Trick. Opening cut "The Bottom" starts slow, but once the whole band kicks in, it becomes a driving pop jam that you could find on any Paul Collins album. "Absent Mind" is a groovy number where Ellsworth goes full Costello on the chorus and is easily a highlight of the whole record.
My biggest problems with Things Change come when he isn't doing all this fun power pop stuff, and while the whole record sounds very nice (shoutout to producer Joel Plaskett), they just don't catch me like the others. These songs either come off as not very memorable or just really cheesy, like sad burner "Save Your Tears" or ballads like "Anywhere But Here," which reminded me of the band that Jack Black is kicked out of in School of Rock.
There is probably a really great power pop EP somewhere in this record; unfortunately it is lost in an album of nice-sounding songs that don't do a whole lot. (Independent)