I Liked It Better When You Had No Heart

       Butch Walker has come a long way from his South Gang and Marvelous Three beginnings and this maturity first reared its head on Sycamore Meadows and now is in full force with I Liked It Better When You Had No Heart.

       Gone are teenage rockers and party music and in their place are 12 solid pop tracks. Production on this album is incredible, from the Phil Spector wall of sound on Pretty Melody and Temporary Title to the subtlety of Don't You Think Someone Should Take You Home.

       Stripped Down Version evokes comparisons to Neil Young, while Canadian Ten sounds like it should have come off the Grand Old Opry stage in 1953. I'm torn between thinking whether House of Cards sounds more like ELO or the Beatles.

       I suppose Americana is the Grammy definition that you would use to describe this album that's not quite pop, not quite rock, and not quite country. Think Travelling Wilburys, but minus the nasal singing of Bob Dylan or Tom Petty.