Sound — 7
A Twist In My Story is the sophomore album of Secondhand Serenade and the debut of its frontman John Vesely with the full band. Vesely is an example of a new-age musician -- after spending night and day on myspace he collected 27 million plays, recorded an acoustic album and was lucky enough to be noticed by a record label. Here the typical story finished and the story of Secondhand Serenade starts. Vesely won a lucky ticket when signing for the Glassnote Records, the new record label of Daniel Glass. As this was the first project of the label, they gave the band a lot of support in all possible ways. Secondhand Serenade got more promotion than a similar band of this level. Some tracks on a new album were borrowed from the first record (like Maybe and Your Call) with the difference that John Vesely is now playing with a full band. Though there are still a lot of quiet moment on the album with many songs starting acoustic -- like the first single Fall For You and then grow into almost orchestral composition. Other tracks follow a similar scenario starting peaceful and growing bigger towards the middle of the song. The title song is a little bit more original than the rest of the tracks. Acoustic songs are definitely what Vesely can do best. The CD ends with a powerful ballad featuring large choruses and Vesely's strained singing. The song is trivially called Goodbye. Guitar lovers would very disappointed with this album. Guitar hooks are too generic and there is not a single guitar solo on the entire record. I would say this is all too radio-friendly, as if the band is afraid to make any single move that is not proved by some hit record of another artist.
Lyrics — 8
Vesely's lyrics are not something extraordinary and they don't fill the songs with some deep meaning, but they are quite good. Rhythms like Stranger-danger-angel sound nice. Of course all them are about love, which is no wonder -- Vesely started to play guitar when his wife asked him to serenade for her (he was playing bass before that, bit it doesn't count). Vesely's voice on the record is buried under loud guitars, rock drums and numerous strings. Not that he started to sing worse comparing to his debut album, but that special sensuality is lost. Though there are a few good moments on the album when the music gets softer.
Overall Impression — 7
Listening to the record you keep wishing for more action, the name of the band quite explains what they are playing as the guys are serenading love songs all through the album. Songs differ from ballads to mid-tempo tracks (which probably are ballads being speeded up). At its most annoying moments the album reminds you of a bubble-gum -- as flat and boring. Even the famous producers (Danny Lohner (Nine Inch Nails) and Butch Walker (All-American Rejects, Avril Lavigne) didn't save the situation or maybe only made it worse. Aiming to create the album that would sell, the guys almost killed Vesely's individuality and made most songs sound cliche instead. Unfortunately the majority of the songs sound like a hundred other pop-rock tracks played on the radio today.