Sound — 8
How come such an underproduced album is so well liked by this much people? The answer here is, Pedro Gabriel grabbed the defining aspects of releases such as "Either/Or" and "In the Aeroplane Over the Sea" and made them his own. I guess if you haven't heard any of these albums you might get somewhat offended by the odd melodies and the cried semitoning of the vocals when going for the high notes, respectively. Considering the album was recorded at home within a short budget, we have to respect the sound he got. Of course he is no George Martin, but the simplistic production and mastering gets the whole feel of the album going. I risk to say that if the album was recorded and produced at the best room in Abbey Road Studios, this album would be downranked by a lot. And I mean, a lot. The acoustic guitar playing is flawless, chords are beautifully voiced and sequences are very original. Electric guitar use is awesome, though it sounds a little bit excessive in the first track due to the lack of drums as other background instruments. Think of an acoustic album by Miles Davis and U2 with Kurt Cobain (as of his live performances) on vocals. That's unimaginable, right?
Lyrics — 10
As the other reviewer already stated, the lyrics are the most impressive aspect of "A Mile Ago." As said in the booklet, Pedro set the tone for the lyrics by just saying the truth and not hiding anything. I like the comparison of the song "A Mile Ago, Pt. 2" to the "Before Sunrise" motion pictures, as the artist himself pointed out as an inspiration. I'm not breaking down lyrics track by track, but I think he hit a homerun as being a charmingly indifferent lover with that John Lennon mindset of singing about anythink happeing around him that makes him think. Good lyrics make average vocals sound good, and good sounding words make out of tune become in tune.
Overall Impression — 8
After listening, I though right away about how revolutionary this might be. Pedro's attitude goes strongly against the music that people like nowadays, it almost could be considered a satire. Music these days has to be composed by a singer that is always in tune, a lot of instruments, an orchestra, 5 producers and writers per track, a guest rapper and DJ, and, of course, recording at 2 different studios, as well as superficial lyrics. "A Mile Ago" has average vocals, out of tune sometimes, two instruments at best, recorded at home and self produced. But, it has great lyrics and is extremely well written. I prefer good lyrics and good songwriting to sloppy lyrics and 4 chord songs. The second song, "Box Office," is the song that stands out from the whole, in every aspect. This song is the crucial point for one coming to understand and like this album. Give it a shot, don't be brainwashed by.