Steven Page: Page One

Steven Page

Anthem

  

After the grade school finger pointing and gnashing of teeth on the first Barenaked Ladies album without Mr. Page’s involvement, everybody’ was checking to see how said gentleman would deal with that.

 

On his first full-length without the BNLs, Page takes the high road right past that sordid mess. No breast-beating, name-calling or crocodilian tears, thank you very much.  In striking out away from the adult contempo stuff his former band paid the mortgages with, Page takes us on a tour of the kind of musics he likes. 


You got yer tight’n’jangly indie pop (‘Marry Me’), yer snarky lyrics wedded to bristly electronica (‘Queen Of America’), yer melodic and insightful balladry (‘Indecision’) If you’re still curious about the fallout around Page’s 2008 coke bust, there’s a track called ‘Clifton Springs’ that’s a fairly direct allusion and cocaine does show up in ‘The Chorus Girl’ but in a very different scenario. The most Ladies-esque song here is ‘All The Young Misogynists”, both in the vocals and its poke in the eye with a foam finger stance.

 

All in all, a busy little menu of coming attractions, which makes the predominant sound here that of a man marking time.


Still, the trademark pipes and inflections are there and he hasn’t lost his knack for the better than catchy pop melody. If there’s any subliminal subtext from Steven it’s that he’s genuinely glad to be out of there. There being BNL

 

Lastly, Page One has way more chances of repeated listenings than the album most recently dropped by his former bandmates.

 

James Lizzard