The Drew Thomson Foundation

The Drew Thomson Foundation

Dine Alone Records, 2019

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


Also a member of the much louder and more abrasive long-running hardcore act Single Mothers, these days, the Canadian singer-songwriter Drew Thomson is also focusing on a quieter solo career where he's sober, less angry, and in a much better place in life sans alcohol.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

This first solo album (a four song EP surfaced last year) wastes no time drawing us in with the opening track “Karma,” which is both rhythmic and playful with a warm indie rock appeal. The jangly rock of “Stay” continues the setting with its gritty, anthemic quality that fans of the early – dare I say more interesting – days of Goo Goo Dolls will appreciate.

Elsewhere, Thomson recruits a punchy folk-pop approach with “Centrefold,” while “A Little More Time” brings in pop influences amid catchy choruses and even catchier guitar work. “Low,” one of the album highlights, switches gears into near stoner rock, grunge sounds, as Thomson's '90s influenced alt-rock crunch prowess pours out unexpectedly well.

Deeper cuts offer the hip-hop influenced “LA Lately,” which slips into dreamy indie pop territory, and the piano balladry of “People Are Pets,” a Single Mother's tune reworked, where orchestral strings demonstrate another avenue to Thomson's songwriting that you're not going to form a pit while listening to. “All I Remember” ends the affair with thumping percussion and swirling melodies on the cautious, sing-along friendly exit, which further solidifies this self-titled record as first rate.

While there is no shortage of punk guys mellowing out and expanding their horizons, the trend seems to be more common post 40 years old. Thomson, still in his early thirties, does it just as well as Craig Finn, Chuck Ragan, or Tim Barry. His power-pop tendencies and hook-filled tunes will strike a chord with fans of Third Eye Blind or even Weezer, too.

Rating: B+

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© 2019 Tom Haugen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Dine Alone Records, and is used for informational purposes only.