So Much More

A modern-day minstrel, Brett Dennen sings folk better than Bob and sweeter than Joan. On So Much More, socially conscious lyrics wrap around Dennen’s simple balladeering and impressive strumming. Red-haired and sweet-voiced, he sounds younger than his 26 years, but his message is a sage one, full of prescient wisdom. His 2005 self-titled debut had a sweet-as-honey aftertaste that was slightly cloying. With So Much More, Dennen retains the message of love for humankind, but there are sharp, bitter notes that give the sweetness some depth. On “There Is So Much More,” Dennen asks, “In a world of suffering, why should I be so blessed?” His love ballads are plaintively romantic, his high voice raw and hopeful when he sings, “You walk like truth through a world of fiction / Because you are a woman.” Even the love songs are infused with a wry note of political activism. Dennen is a guitar-plucking genius with an endearing sound who still has years of spreading the message of love before him. I’m looking forward.