At Station Four (Side One Dummy)
By: Alex Steininger
Brendon Massei, also known as Supperbell Roundup, is an amazing nineteen-year-old who has been traveling the country with a greyhound bus pass and a guitar since he was sixteen years old. On AT STATION FOUR he delivers a country album as pure as they come; tender, emotional, and full of heart, the banjo and acoustic guitar are the center focus, while his voice and lyrics are just as pure.
"Playing the Old Banjo" opens up the album with some hot picking action as he taps away at his old banjo and creates a stomping smooth country number sure to please folk, country, and even rock fans. His voice adds experience and a life-on-the-road truth to the music so, as he sings, you know it to be straight from the miles he's clocked on his feet and guitar.
"Where You'd End Up" is a soft, laid back acoustic number that glides through the air with a gentle stillness. It feels like a man sitting on his porch in the hot summer's heat playing and singing what he feels as the day turns to afternoon and there is nothing but beautiful country life for miles.
"The Night Before You Had To Leave" is yet another solid country number that will make fans of true country (not the Nashville pop crap corporate America passes off as country) take notice and fall in love with. Brendon has the skills, the heart, and the warmth, as well as the experience, to craft finely tuned country greatness.
"Where'd It All Go Wrong" is another down home, porch-life country song with some rich vocal harmonies and great lyrics. A detailed story about "stealing food" and wondering "Where'd It All Go Wrong?", Brendon pinpoints life through many American's eyes in a peaceful, yet blunt way, making the listener take notice and realize how great they have it. And, for those that can relate to his poignant message, he warms up your heart and makes you feel like change -- a new life and a happier day -- can be right around corner.
Ending with "Leaving Town," the subtle number gently breezes through with a quiet noise that will grab a hold of you and burn deep inside you for quite some time. Brendon is quite the songwriter, and at nineteen, a rare commodity in the youth-filled, beat-the-trends-to-death market we live in.
For many songwriters, it takes time and plenty of records to nail their craft, but Brendon seems to have it down before he's even old enough to buy alcohol. His songs are filled with realism, sorrow, and truths of life as he sees it. Whether the songs are relating to sad or uplifting tails, he paints the picture as real as he can, and makes sure the listener is feeling everything he feels. I'll give this album an A+.