Life on the road can do many things for a person. For Norwegian singer/songwriter Glenn Meling, it's the inspiration behind his third album, Minnesota. Looking at the tracklist you can tell this album was made for a long journey on the road. And just like any time spent traveling, there are hiccups and bumps along Meling's journey. The opening track "Alive" catches listeners off guard with its edgy rock intro, which quickly mellows out into a quiet jam. Just when you're getting used to the new vibe, Meling changes pace again turning the song into lite adult contempo paired with unexpected soulful background vocals. While you can admire Meling for wanting to think outside the box, there's too much going on in this track to really get a grasp on it.
Meling continues to switch moods and sound throughout the entire album. The title track is full of somber reflection, while "America" is one of the most upbeat songs on the album with its Jazz/Latin-infused sound. He goes for a funk sound mixed with some electronics on "Secret Flower" and "The Good I See in You" is so Jazzy and sultry, it sounds like something that should be played in a dark lounge. Hearing the different directions Meling takes his music is intriguing but it brings iffy results. Most of the time, the album feels all over the place. Sometimes you want a certain vibe or mood to continue for a bit more only for Meling to change it sometimes mid-song. Despite its flaws, Minnesota is a thoughtful entry in Meling's catalog and should make those roadtrips a little less lonely.
Minnesota is out now. You can get a copy here.