This week, RockAngel’s Weekly Radar brings you Daniel Wesley Band, hailing from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. But if they never told you that, you would be adamant that they were from Hawaii or some SoCal beach city. Their sound is a mix of Pepper and Pearl Jam…and their songs fit equally into a summer beach day (“Johnny” from Outlaw) as they do into a smoky dive bar (“Pony” from Sing + Dance).
Their debut album Outlaw from 2006 definitely has a laid-back Jack Johnson kind of influence, but trust me, they bring a lot more energy to their live show than Jack ever has. Although…trying to pinpoint the feel of that album is difficult as at anytime they’ll throw you for a loop and kick it into a southern rock style as they do on “RockSteady”. This was a great start, but the album got little recognition and was barely a blip in the musical scene.
It wasn’t until the 2007 release of Sing + Dance and a live performance at 710 Beach that they hit the RockAngel Radar. These laid back rockers brought a positive, yet rockin’ attitude to the small San Diego venue and that album provided a solid listen for the crowd for many months to come. This album also produced the single “Ooh Ooh” that hit the Vancouver radio stations hard and pushed them into the Canadian limelight. My favorite on the album was “My Pony”, which is a much hotter remake of Ginuwine’s original version than Far’s in my opinion.
Later in 2007, Daniel Wesley released a solo project Driftin which is reflective of a more solo sound and a lot more laid back. As CD Baby put it, it is a “more mellow and introspective acoustic offering”. Maybe a little too laid back for me, but I love the ambition.
Daniel Wesley is set to release a new album this summer (2009) and we can only hope that they took the success and sexiness of Sing + Dance and just ran with it. With a voice like Eddie Vedder and beach, reggae and rock melodies, this is a band that the world needs to hear.