A flangy guitar-pumping, organ-chunking “Make It Better” opens Jann Klose’s fantastic 10-song Mosaic.
I like the truly commercial (in a very good way) harmony vocals on “Know What’s Right” and Klose’s voice throughout. Equally comfortable just with his strong vocal and acoustic guitar, Klose dazzles on the sweet ballad “Still.” “Long Goodbye” is a solid, medium-tempo angelic love song (keyboardist Lars Potteiger stands out here too) with a strong, searing chorus. “Falling Tears” features some fun rhythm guitar from Klose and great drumming from Patrick Carmichael (Rob Mitzner also plays drums on this album). The rest of the musicians include Chris Marolf on bass and banjo, the afore mentioned Lars Potteiger on keyboards and accordion, Carmichael and Mitzner on drums, and violinist Leah Potteiger, who make up Klose’s band, The Edukators.
I like Marolf leading with banjo plucking and Leah Potteiger’s violin on the truly great, upbeat, commercial, semi-country “Beautiful One” and just about by the time you need it, a piano roils under Klose, who sounds very damn like old Paul McCartney himself on the soft and easy, maybe best tune here, “The Kite.”
Tim Buckley’s “Song To the Siren,” featuring Klose a cappella (Klose was a featured vocalist/guitarist in the movie Greeting From Tim Buckley), ends this album; it’s a very pretty cover indeed.
Overall, Mosaic is about as solid of an offering as you are bound to hear all year, featuring good songwriting, lots of musical styles touched on, Klose fronting a group of crack musicians with very well thought-out productions.