Kina Grannis: Stairwells

After trying the piano in elementary school, and the violin in high school, she finally found her calling: the guitar. While attending USC, she produced her first album, Sincerely, Me, in the college’s music industry department. Since that CD, she has release three more, including her most recent work, Stairwells, which was originally released in 2010, and re-released in 2011. Her predominantly acoustic pop music has been the focus of many fans, especially the online community.

Lots of slow songs about love. I feel as if this has become a major flaw in many pop songs. Although her smooth voice reminded me of other popular acoustic artists like Colbie Caillat and Corinne Bailey Rae, at times her lyrics became repetitive, and she did not have the same musicianship as other top names of the genre. Her songs didn’t escalade to excite listeners and the tunes became monotonous at times.

Still, there were a few points where Grannis’ potential poured out of the speakers. On songs like “Valentine” or “The One You Say Goodnight To,” her voice pushed the song to new heights, and allowed listeners to see why her name should be used with other greats of the acoustic pop genre.

It’s hard for me to take a clear side on this album. At times I felt as if some songs, especially her single “Valentine,” could be major hits. At other times I felt as if she was like any other pop artist: boring lyrics revolving around “I love you” and extremely simple melodies to go with them. Although the songs were very relaxing, I was left wanting more from Kina Grannis and this album.

In A Word: Decent