Editors' pick

Brendan Benson

Rock
'

Editorial Review

Brendan Benson, one of the new pop singer/songwriters appearing all over the club circuit, isn't just another pretty pop voice.

Musical greats including Iggy Pop, who invited Benson to sing on a track of the 2007 Stooges' album "Weirdness," and Jack White, who teamed with Benson in 2005 to form the Raconteurs, publicly praise his talents.

With this star power behind him, Benson has released his fourth solo album, "My Old Familiar Friend." One listen and it's clear why musical greats have reached out.

What isn't so clear is why more music fans haven't.

Benson is obviously a solid, honey-voiced singer with the songwriting and musical chops to shift from the soul-meets-pop sounds of "Garbage Day" to the almost-unchained rocker-with blazing-guitar-riffs that is "A Whole Lot Better" to the peppy pop song "Eyes on the Horizon" without losing any musical steam.

Crisp, fun all-American pop doesn't get much better than this.

-- Nancy Dunham, Weekend (Dec. 2009)