Sean Kehoe, 'Dig' | Album Review | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Music » Album Review

Sean Kehoe, 'Dig'

By

Published March 29, 2023 at 10:00 a.m.
Updated March 29, 2023 at 10:04 a.m.


Sean Kehoe, Dig - COURTESY
  • Courtesy
  • Sean Kehoe, Dig

(Self-released, digital)

Spring is here and brings with it an energy that conjures up words like "release," "do," "bloom," "impulsivity," "color" and "light." Sean Kehoe must have been feeding off springtime inspiration when he recorded his debut album, Dig, during a heat wave last May. The album, which features eight original songs, was recorded in two days with no rehearsals or prior preparation, Kehoe wrote in an email to Seven Days.

Given this, you might expect to hear an unpolished mess. Dig, however, is a complete-sounding album. The improvisational aspect of its creation contributes to the record feeling exciting and unexpected, as opposed to unfinished or disjointed. After all, "what's the need for contemplation?" as Kehoe sings on the "The Age of Aching Eyes."

"Lunch" is a punchy opening track reminiscent of the theme song to "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air." The instrumentation is relatively bare, a funky guitar riff and bass line looped over sparse but soulful hip-hop percussion as Kehoe's words take the spotlight. "Lunch" sets a tone. Kehoe is here to have some fun — "I'm just tryna get some lunch!" he rap-sings — and showcases his talent in an unpretentious and relatable way. I, for one, am always just trying to get some lunch. 

The rest of Dig is playful and energetic, recalling the sounds of the reggae-ska-pop-rock-jam bands of the '90s, like G. Love & Special Sauce. Nick Wood of Burlington funk-rock band Gang of Thieves — with whom Kehoe formerly played — is featured on Dig, and you can hear the influence of that band's sound, as well. Fast and energetic, "The Age of Aching Eyes" is a standout example whose horn section will capture your attention and have you tapping your foot. Dan Ryan's percussion is right on time, while Zach Gregory's bass line brings the song to the next level.

Kehoe shows some local love in "802 Daydream," a sweet, nostalgic ode to Vermont's Queen City. Kehoe shouts out beloved Burlington staples such as Zero Gravity brewery, sunsets at Waterfront Park and Dead Sets at Nectar's. It could be the anthem for graduating University of Vermont seniors: "Good night, Queen City / time to put those Adirondacks to bed / and though your light is so pretty behind me / my path lays ahead," he sings.

Kehoe delivers a unique variety of energetic tunes on Dig. Maybe it's the birds chirping outside as I write this, or maybe it's the lyrics from "Gold" that have been stuck in my head: "Turn down the thralls that mold you / forget them 'cause you are not the same ... seize that moment that lies here today." Either way, I'm liking these springtime sounds.

Listen to Dig at seankehoe.bandcamp.com.

Speaking of Sean Kehoe, Dig

Tags

Comments

Comments are closed.

From 2014-2020, Seven Days allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we've appreciated the suggestions and insights, right now Seven Days is prioritizing our core mission — producing high-quality, responsible local journalism — over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.