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Drayton Michaels – Low Stress In The Deep End

Where does elevator music come from? Are there musicians that sit in a studio and write the songs that gets played in the Safeway at 3 in the morning so you don’t feel like the only shopper in the store? If this is in fact a genre, it should be called “elevator,” and Drayton Michaels should be dominating the scene. People would be spending more on cottage cheese and eggs, and Michaels would be selling records like they were going out of style.

On Michaels’ debut, Low Stress in the Deep End, the globe-trotting solo artist rocks acoustically, but severely lacks any passion. The fact that it wasn’t until I saw a picture of Michaels that I figured out he was a man was a little jarring, considering his voice is so effeminate. On tracks like “Thievery” and “Ghost of Manhattan” his high voice drips like he’s been eating Natalie Merchant’s leftovers.

What Michaels has done right is slickly produced these eleven tracks, along with the help of producer Gary Reynolds. The songs themselves do blend together seamlessly, but the monotony of the tracks on Deep End is almost unbearable. Hopefully, Drayton Michaels will find the back up band he’s been looking for, and transform these dull tracks into something interesting live. Otherwise, he might just have to help me with my shopping list.


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