From The Morton Blog

Singer-Songwriter Vincent Poag Releases Sophomore Album, For the Girls

By , Contributor
Native New Yorker Vincent Poag released his debut album Circling Back in 2011. Despite being a man of a certain age, the Dylan-influenced singer-songwriter garnered positive notices, as well as considerable attention for the single “Stress.” He’s back with his second release, For the Girls, which offers a baker’s dozen originals. One, “Wonder,” was co-written with Mark Newman. That’s also the only time Poag steps back from the microphone to spotlight someone else on lead vocals, Diana Hope (also featured on Circling Back).

From the affable album opener, “45 Mile an Hour Girl,” the music is mandolin-, fiddle-, and harmonica-drenched mature pop. Poag and co-producers Kathy Sommer & Matt Anthony have concocted a sparklingly clear sound that highlights a varied ensemble of players. Muted trumpet haunts “Waiting for Me.” Appropriate swagger is ladled upon “New Orleans,” with a full complement of bluesy brass and woodwinds. Poag scores no originality points with his vocal delivery, a mash-up of Bob Dylan and Mark Knopfler’s nasally inflections. But his voice carries the weight of sincerity. He doesn’t display extraordinary range, but his pleasant tone suits his lively melodies well.

According to Poag, on his official website, the songs collected on For the Girls “represent man's inept struggle with the opposite sex.” From the clarinet-ornamented “Scarlett & Me,” written “"in a lighthearted complimentary spirit with the hope of cracking of smile," to the warm maternal tribute “Momma” (his “favorite girl”), the album is a tuneful excursion into folksy Americana that lives up to Poag’s ambitions.

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Chaz Lipp writes for The Morton Report.

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