Chariot [Chariot + Chariot Stripped]

Chariot [Chariot + Chariot Stripped]

4.7 43
by Gavin DeGraw
     
 

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With his engaging debut, Chariot, Clive Davis protégé Gavin DeGraw is poised to follow in the impressive footsteps of ivory-tickling singer-songwriters such as Billy Joel, Ben Folds, and even Stevie Wonder. The confident, charismatic 26-year-old will win the hearts of swooning female fans with infectious songs that run the gamut from the soft rock ofSee more details below

Overview

With his engaging debut, Chariot, Clive Davis protégé Gavin DeGraw is poised to follow in the impressive footsteps of ivory-tickling singer-songwriters such as Billy Joel, Ben Folds, and even Stevie Wonder. The confident, charismatic 26-year-old will win the hearts of swooning female fans with infectious songs that run the gamut from the soft rock of "Over-Rated" to the Wonder-reminiscent title song to the chiming, Mathew Sweet–ish power pop of "Crush." The glossy yet soulful Chariot features contributions from guitarist Michael Ward (Wallflowers) and drummer Joey Waronker (R.E.M./Beck), but DeGraw's supple voice is the real star. Seductive and surprisingly mature, DeGraw swoops, whispers, and even hollers with gospel-style fervor as he sings his sophisticated, mostly mellow love songs, such as the affirmative "Belief," on which he croons: "Belief makes things real / Makes things feel alright / Belief makes things true / Like you and I." So kick back with your honey -- and a bottle of your favorite vino -- and let DeGraw's voice and words make a believer of you.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Johnny Loftus
After receiving strong notices from the New York press for his fiery club performances, Gavin DeGraw signed with J Records and issued Chariot, his debut, in July 2003. But while it had promise, Chariot also suffered from a lack of imagination in the production department. There was no denying the humanity and bawdy soul wrapped up in DeGraw's voice, so why was it stifled by unimaginative, mainstream-leaning production? It's unclear what exactly prompted it (perhaps the album's slow burn rise on the charts?), but a full year later DeGraw's Chariot was re-released. However, this time around, the original studio version was joined by a song-for-song acoustic reading of Chariot, and the rawer presentation is exactly what it needed. The basic setup of drums, bass, acoustic guitar, subtle harmonies, and the piano and untreated vocals of DeGraw kicks out the slickness that shriveled cuts like "Follow Through," "Belief," and "Meaning." Here, they're the leafy greenery of a solid band kicking it on a warm April night in New York City. The title track was already a standout, but in its new, understated guise, there's a comforting Ben Harper quality about it. And the brushed snare is a perfectly subtle touch. "Just Friends" gets a new, mildly funky arrangement, and the cynically funny hedonism jam "Chemical Party" -- "You're just too high to see my point/You think your name is 'Pass the joint'" -- becomes a delightfully ragged jam with overtones of Simon & Garfunkel's "Cecilia." You can just imagine DeGraw kicking the piano stool out after the a cappella singalong breakdown. The effect of this "Stripped" format on DeGraw's music is immediate, and made more apparent by the inclusion of the studio cousin. It's an illustration of how great -- how real -- artists can sound when they aren't constrained by radio-ready sheen.

Product Details

Release Date:
07/27/2004
Label:
J-Records
UPC:
0828766346121
catalogNumber:
63461
Rank:
10217

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Gavin DeGraw   Primary Artist,Piano,Keyboards,Vocals
Alvin Moody   Bass,Bass Guitar,Background Vocals
Michael Ward   Guitar
Patrick Warren   Organ,Harmonium
Joey Waronker   Drums
Paulo Coelho   Guitar,Background Vocals
Rodney Howard   Percussion
Oz Noy   Guitar
Paul Coelho   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Michel Bassin   Composer
Jon Kaplan   Engineer
George Marino   Mastering
Marco Neves   Composer
Didier Serbourdin   Composer
Patrick Warren   String Arrangements
Mark Endert   Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Alli   Art Direction
Leon Zervos   Mastering
John Klenner   Composer
Michael McCoy   Vocal Overdubs
Gavin DeGraw   Composer
Didier Bréard   Composer
Steve Gryphon   Programming
James Diener   Producer,Audio Production
Goran Juresic   Composer

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