By Abigail Prendergast
Steely Dan lead singer and keyboardist, Donald Fagen is set to release latest solo work, “Sunken Condos” on Oct. 16. The first single from it, “I’m Not The Same Without You,” is being considered some of his best work yet.
Steely Dan frontman, Donald Fagen’s fourth solo studio album, Sunken Condos, will be released on compact disc and digital format – as well as vinyl – on October 16, 2012.
Rolling Stone magazine has just released an mp3 of the record’s first single, “I’m Not The Same Without You.” The track was met with enthusiasm by the magazine, as it features “smooth funk grooves, sensual piano chords and slinky guitar riffs.”
As the title may imply, it is a song about the subsequent rising from the ashes of a failed romance. In his usual style, however, Fagen ups the ante in some unexpected way – in this case, the narrator finds himself “[evolving] into something a bit more than human – at least in his own mind.” the 64-year-old singer/songwriter and piano player told Rolling Stone.
“I’m Not the Same Without You” tells the tale of what is presumably a fairly average type of person slowly but surely mutating into some sort of super human. While not turning into anybody who can rival Jeanne Gray of the X-Men by a long shot, this song is really indicative of Fagen’s own sense of adaptability.
Since the release of the 2003 Dan album, Everything Must Go, the band had good sound, but also gave off the vibe that they were struggling to adapt to the 21st Century. Come 2006 and Fagen’s third solo record, Morph the Cat, the singer looked and sounded as if he and his group were getting a better grasp of the trends and cultural changes of the current era. Then again, for those who can recall its release, it was a pretty dark album with a sense of animosity toward today’s society.
The “I’m Not the Same Without You” track is one of the best songs Fagen has ever produced within the confines of the past three decades and even rivals some of his earlier Steely Dan collaboration work with Walter Becker and their rotating cast of bandmates throughout the 1970s. There is little if any sense of strain or struggle.
If all, or even most of the songs on Sunken Condos are as well composed and defined as this one, any true Dan fan should not find it disappointing at all.