Jon Hassell The Making of Spring

Stop me if you've heard this description before: a burgeoning singer/songwriter obsessed with Nigel Godrich's production work and an affinity for cathartic lyrics. Yet, considering the corner this description paints him in, Hassell opens up his debut EP with a stirring Sigur Rós-meets-Plus Minus lyric-less piece entitled "Introduction," which, unlike a couple of other songs from The Making of Spring, has an impressive melody encased in thick, ethereal production. I'd like to imagine the lack of lyrics didn't help matters, though the other three songs don't offer much proof to refute it. "One Day" is the only other song of the four that works well, just barely escaping the MOR trappings that spoil "Allston" and "Can of Rain." All the same, "Introduction" makes this a promising debut — though Hassell is going to have to pull some new tricks out from his tear-soaked sleeves if he ever hopes to hold our attention for more than 20 minutes at a time. (Radar)