CD Review: Rob Bonfiglio “Bring on The Happy”

Pop fans will remember Rob Bonfiglio (pronounced “Bon-feel-e-o”) as a former member of Wanderlust and The Skies Of America. Rob displays consummate musicianship in full bloom on this, his debut “Bring on The Happy.” This is the epitome of finely handcrafted power pop. It starts off with great promise on “Nothing Will Hold You Down” a full sonic modern pop blast that recalls both John Mayer, Swirl 360, Taxiride and Wanderlust. The sound of “That’s Alright” has a radio friendly nod to the seventies style guitar with the super musicanship and heavenly hooks and makes it a great single. Robs vocals recall a mix of The Chili Peppers Anthony Kiedis and Carl Wilson. It’s no wonder that Rob’s worked with Beach Boys legend Brian Wilson and Wilson Phillips, on the epic “How To Mend a broken Heart” the melody and harmonies bring to mind both the Holland-era Beach Boys and Todd Rundgren’s “Something/Anything” here. And it keeps going, the killer rhythm and attention to details on “React” make it another “air guitar” classic. The guitar lead and multi-tracked vocals of “What you Need” recall Eagles’ Joe Walsh at his most catchy. The mid-tempo ballad “Straight from the Heart” starts like a Stevie Wonder opus and then the chorus plays with a bouncy optimism, and great chord progressions. The album dials down a little toward the end with “Sympathy (Who I am)” but jumps back in with a classic Fosse piano riff in “The Best is Yet To Come.” The ending tracks do a decent job of balancing heavy arena rock (“Blow Me Away”)and another heart felt ballad on the final song “Some Days are Better.” This is an excellent solo debut for the musically literate and it also makes my top ten of 2008 list. Wow. A lot of great music came out this month so far. My pop cup runneth over with this one.

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