Music Review—Todd O’Keefe

Album: Salvador

Artist: Todd O’Keefe

On February 5th, Todd O’Keefe released his latest album, Salvador.  Nailing down a genre for O’Keefe is challenging.  Using experience based on a past in the music industry and the amount of talent he has worked with, Todd has created a sound all his own.  With guitar stylings similar to The Kooks and vocals as powerful as Win Butler from Arcade Fire, Todd is using his full set of skills for this album.

Salvador starts off with the song “Sentimental Love”.  It has the feeling of a 50’s dinner love song.  I can picture Danny from Grease serenading Sandy with this song.  Giving it a modern twist however, the guitar has a rougher tone that pierces through the vocals and staccato piano chords.  “Salvador”, the song that this album is named after, is second on the track list.  This song is an example of Todd’s ability to diversify his talent and make sure that every instrument is heard, including his voice.  Each part is given an opportunity to shine.  His use of metaphor in this song left me quoting it for days.

“Some say love is like a flower/coming up strong and full of power/wild like the wind that blows the petals loose,” is just one example of the powerful lyrics that Todd gives on this album.  His ability to use not just the notes, but the rests is also extremely entertaining, as right before these lyrics there is a beat of silence that has you leaning in for more.

“When My Baby Comes Home” follows the 50’s vibe but with a slower tempo.  There’s a sound of longing in Todd’s voice, perhaps explained by the name of the song.  He also knows how to keep a slower song interesting with the wavering guitar lines and catchy melody.  The next, “Please Take My Sunshine Away”, is hard change from the previous songs.  Fast tempo, energetic lyrics, and ripping guitar chords lace this song with an intensity that Todd is known for.  This song is perfectly placed in the track list as it allows for some variety.

One of my personal favourites on the album “Never Loved No One Like You” takes blues rock guitar sounds and mixes it with Todd’s experienced vocals.  The guitar is one of the focal points of this song especially the rocking solo.  “It’s Lonely Down Here” is a song like no other that I have heard from Todd before.  Imagine meandering down a dusty road in an old western movie and this song would be the soundtrack.  With the wood blocks plunking away and the low, gravely guitar, Todd sets the mood for this somber, serious song.

Todd is no stranger to The Voice Magazine and we hope to continue seeing his work in the future.  Salvador is available on the usual streaming sites such as Spotify, iTunes, and Amazon.  It can also be purchased on his website.