Reviews Of ‘The Orange Songs’

Released in 2004

orangecd

-by Gina Vivinetto
-courtesy of the St. Petersburg Times

TAMPA SINGER PEELS OUTER LAYERS

Come celebrate the release of The Orange Songs, the newest CD by prolific Tampa singer-musician Jeremy Gloff, above.

The ever restless Gloff was in the studio recording a full-band follow-up to his critically acclaimed Romantico but halted production midway, deciding to record instead a batch of deeply personal, stripped-down songs. (The Orange Songs, incidentally, served as Gloff’s final project for a college psychology course. Grade: A.)

The disc is haunting in its candidness and commentary on 20-somethings in their social scenes, be they young gay guys, young women with body image complexes or local musicians filled with annoying hubris.

Gloff has a perceptive eye and a gift for conveying stories in bouncy, wise, three-minute ditties.

-by Jennifer Layton
-courtesy of IndieMusic.com

Saturday October 9, 2004
Artist: Jeremy Gloff
CD: The Orange Songs
Home: Tampa, Florida
Style: Confessional Acoustic Folk
Quote: “This artist has nerve”

This is Jeremy Gloff’s 13th album, so he’s probably already aware of how he can use that sweet nasal voice to his advantage. Which is why he waits until Track 3 to start throwing out lines like “I call people cunts when I get angry.” I skipped back and turned up the volume to make sure I’d heard that right.

Once I’d adjusted, I accepted the fact that Gloff gets angry a lot. He thinks he’s ugly. He snarls at homophobia. He’s an openly gay man who’s faced his share of right-wingers, which explains lines like “drinking is weak and being Christian is too.” This man will not go quietly. Anywhere. And when he’s confessing, he spills it all out on the table. This CD is not for the properly polite or easily embarrassed.

But I’m game.

If it seems that Gloff packs a lot of soul-baring into one CD, consider that he recorded it as a project for his Psychology of Personal Growth class. He’s had phone sex. He’s had cyber sex. He’s paid money to give blow jobs. He’s “drowned in miles of skin.” (Believe me, I’m sparing you the graphic details.) He’s tried desperately to be someone else to make other people happy. (I like the lyrics in “I’d Rather Be Alone” that describe his pseudo-vegitarianism in front of certain friends. Simply put, he’s sick of grilled cheese.)

Yes, it’s relentless. But sometimes I get tired of sweet, pretty folk songs and just want to hear someone spill their guts, no matter how uncomfortable it is to listen. You won’t hear any of these songs on the “One Tree Hill” or “Smallville” soundtracks. If you want tough love, Gloff’s got your soundtrack right here.

Blunt, open, and oddly redemptive, this is a brave effort. This artist has nerve. Obviously, I’m not the only one who thinks so. He made an “A” in his Psychology of Personal Growth class. By the way, the title of the next album (due in early 2005) will be Now’s The Right Time To Feel Good. Glad he got all the angry vibes out of the way first.

-by Curtis Ross
-courtesy of The Tampa Tribune

Jeremy Gloff’s 13th (!) self-released disc is as emotionally naked as a performer can get without actually pulling a Janet Jackson.

The local singer-songwriter/ man-about-town composed these 14 songs for his final project in his Psychology for Personal Growth course. Gloff’s “Orange Songs” are so open emotionally, so willing to expose his fears and flaws, it almost feels as if the listener stumbled onto a diary, recorded with an acoustic guitar backing.

Gloff backs his confessions and observations with strong melodies. Primarily solo, Gloff gets occasional sympathetic backing from members of the Cold Band and bassist Mark Nikolich.

Oh yeah, Gloff’s class project got an A

-by Leah Konen
-courtesy of The Daily Tar Heel

STAFF WRITER – October 7, 2004

The Orange Songs are blue.

On his latest LP, indie singer-songwriter Jeremy Gloff delivers an emotional onslaught.

The album begins with “A.M. Radio.” Using only the acoustic guitar, the track draws its appeal from beautiful melodies.

The upbeat “Bike Rider” follows, showing the listener that Gloff uses variety in his music.

While his voice is a little whiny and high-pitched, Gloff produces some very rhythmic elements with simple guitar riffs, showing that he’s able to do a lot with one simple instrument. The song’s chorus is musically strong, and while lyrically it is not impressive, it doesn’t leave the listener unimpressed.

Gloff continues to use his guitar splendidly throughout the album, but some songs lose their sonic appeal thanks to the vocals. The singer lacks smoothness as he jumps from pitch to pitch. He sings with the same style as Bob Dylan, but with out the same appealing effects.

Gloff’s voice simply lacks tonal quality. Sadly, it ends up detracting from the album’s solid guitar elements.

Throughout the next few tracks, Gloff continues to produce somewhat attractive songs. He changes his style, going from folk to classical rock — even sounding a bit jazzy in “Gorgeous in Cowboy Boots.”

But it isn’t until about halfway through the album that Gloff really starts to pour his heart into the music. On “Do Me a Favor” he openly acknowledges his homosexuality and asks the listener for acceptance with the lines “Don’t treat me special ’cause I’m gay, do me a favor and don’t even notice.”

The Orange Songs changes pace here, as the tunes go from focusing on happy, peppy topics to ones much closer to Gloff’s experience.

Kind of like a male Ani DiFranco, Gloff mixes anger with sadness to promote a clear message that he wants to present through the LP.

The following acoustic tracks culminate in the anger-ridden “Sexual Dysfunction,” in which he struggles with social acceptance. Gloff’s voice is more powerful and angry as he asks to be loved.

With handclaps and backup vocals making it noteworthy musically as well as emotionally, the song is the album’s highlight.

The Orange Songs is composed well in that it builds to a climax and then tones down again in the remaining tracks.

“Writing This To Haunt You” adds female vocals and keyboards to create a dark yet melodious track that enchants the audience.

Ultimately, Gloff accomplishes the most through the guitar rather than vocals.

While he might not be the most talented singer or songwriter, he makes the album so personal that it is hard not to be affected by his bitter poetry,