ALBUM: Erik Chandler – The Truth
August 19th, 2016
Erik Chandler; current bassist of punk rock pioneers Bowling For Soup and full-time dream chaser. During the stripped back, humble BFS acoustic tours, Chandler threw his hat into the ring and often opened these shows with his own solo material from which spawned his first release, a 4-track EP, ‘Writing The Wrongs’. Four years later, and Chandler has recruited a band and penned his debut solo album, ‘The Truth’.
Now, ‘The Truth’ is also:
• The 1993 debut solo album from the Aaron Hall, the former leader singer of R&B group GUY.
• The 2000 debut solo album from East Coast hip-hop artist, Beanie Sigel.
• The 2006 debut solo album from Chicago rapper, Belo Zero.
• The 2006 fourth studio album from metalcore sextet, Bleeding Through.
• The 1997 debut solo album from Brady Seals, a former guitarist of country band Little Texas.
• The 2008 sophomore album from Atlanta R&B girl group, Cherish.
• The 1994 EP from Dutch grindcore outfit, Consolation.
• The 1997 acoustic album from Prince, which was part of the 3-CD Crystal Ball set.
• The 2008 sixth studio album from Swedish eurodance trio, Basic Element.
• The 2015 seventh solo album from former Screwed Up Click member, Trae tha Truth (with ‘The Truth, Pt. 2’ released earlier on in 2016).
So, with a completely uninspired, cliché title comes a formulaic, run-of-the-mill, why-even-bother album. Like how gruel meets the bare minimum requirements to be technically classed as food, ‘The Truth’ in theory can be called an album. Thirteen tracks of bland, boring lame-rock, this LP is so middle of the road it’s basically a central reservation.
Y’know that generic radio rock that’s playing in the background of a dingy, neon-lit, all-American bar when the detectives on some crappy cop drama, like CSI, waltz in to interrogate the bar staff over the latest murder/theft/happy-slap? Well, from here on out, expect to hear only songs from this album quietly playing away whilst bad actors spew even worse dialogue over them.
With the lyrics consisting solely of girls, their names and the woes they bring, ‘The Truth’ is almost a parody of itself executed with the straightest of faces. Sure, Chandler and his band are competent musicians, and it’s clear that they can write a song and bash out a decent tune, but that’s all that they can do. For a vanity project called ‘The Truth’, the lyrics lack the raw honesty that is a staple of the genre (see Dave McPherson), and, given how much time he worked on it, musically speaking it’s not impressive in the slightest.
Perhaps the best summary of this album is an actual featured lyric, taken from ‘It Ain’t Right’, where Chandler sings, “I’ve seen this a thousand times / I heard it sung in countless rhymes / And where it goes is not too hard to see.”
Written by Andy Roberts (@Sassensquatch)