S. Eric Ketzer: Lost Angel

These songs will fill your soul, making you believe in God and the intricacies of life.

The term “singer songwriter” has lost its meaning. Sure, there are many lead vocalists who also write lyrics and music, but they’re not putting their hearts into it; they’re not giving of themselves, not opening up the world—theirs or ours—for deeper introspection. If you’re looking for the true poet, look no further than local artist S. Eric Ketzer. Ketzer’s 2002 release, Lost Angel, is a collection of poems sung as songs, each of them telling a story.

“Desolation Angel”—in Ketzer’s words, a tribute to Jack Kerouac—starts with a haunting, distorted guitar and never lets up, conveying a relentless sense of attempting to break free. “Dreams Come” is a pretty love song Ketzer wrote, watching his wife sleep. Despite the pain of a breakup in “When I Think it’s Over,” the song itself is a bouncy jaunt with fast fretwork. A bit of a country influence infects songs such as “Sometimes” and “Modern Cowboy,” lending texture to the disc overall. The swirling sound of “Sacrifice” is captivating, as well. As a closing point, “Lost Angel” is a beautiful song representing lone dancer as angel.

The inclusion of two spoken-word poems, “Baptismal” and “Reunion,” detracts from the continuity of the music; while I enjoy Ketzer’s reading the first time through, on follow-up listens they seem to get in the way. However, they are but two songs; the remaining 12 will fill your soul, making you believe in God and the intricacies of life…making you want to grab a glass of wine and the one you love and dance like no one’s watching.

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