This sophomore solo effort from Dallas native Jonas Martin is an interesting melding of pop, blues-y vibes, classic rock and groove – and it’s a good mix. The Color Scheme is highly-tuneful, carefully constructed so that the different styles mesh and flow; really, a well-thought out piece of coherent work.
The complexity of “Design A Better Yesterday” made this, for me, the album’s standout track – a slow groove of world-weariness, a strong melody and hook and various movements; “Life Obsessed” is an inspired album opener with its claustrophobic rhythm, hypnotic keyboard pattern and funkability and “Because Love” has a modernized Harry Nilssson/George Harrison feel with the frenetic piano body and that flanged Harrisonized guitar sound after the first chorus. It’s the clever nuances that make this album so meaty – there’s a lot to pick out of the recipe.
“Wannabe”, which we’ve included here, is the lead track before the album’s release and has that classic piano-boogie-rock vibe, but very sparse (piano, bass, drum, acoustic guitar and very subdued, production-wise) until the song’s mid-point, when orchestrated synth string lines emerge; “Middle Man (The Fall)” has a Carney feel – both musically and vocally – and is another album highlight and “In A Pool Of Light” is about as soft and quiet as this album gets and serves as a perfect, mellow closer.
A very nice, colorful collection of songs, without question. Jonas Martin has carved himself out an impressive work of maturity, skill and memorability. This album is not in my usual wheelhouse of what I listen to, but damn, it’s made its way onto my playlist.
The Color Scheme will be released Friday, August 26th, 2016