The first track on This Is The New Year is hilarious and awesome, and I knew this would be a great album on its merit alone.

Some songs are reminiscent of Elton John due to the sincerity of Ian Axel’s voice, while other tracks are playful, in a Regina Spektor sort of way. The aptly named track “Waltz” is a great example of his ability to throw musical curve balls that immediately pull the listener back in. It’s a classically oriented piece, but with Ian’s voice it takes on its own style, as opposed to being a piano-rock rehash of a classical piece, it’s very interesting.

This Is The New Year’s best trait is its cohesiveness. Often times, many artists get lost in their influences and the album ends up becoming a mélange of great ideas that are poorly executed, Ian Axel doesn’t go down this path and instead sticks to his style the entire way through, occasionally surprising the listener with tracks likeWaltz” or “Leave Me Alone!”

This is a well-crafted album, absolutely no doubt about it. The first track is gripping due to its poignant, yet humorous lyrics, and the subsequent tracks thrive on their own sincerity. Fans of Elton John and Regina Spektor will find this album especially endearing.

In A Word: Exuberant

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