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Ronnie Dawson

More Bad Habits – 1999 (Yep Roc)

Reviewed by Jon Johnson

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CDs by Ronnie Dawson

After focusing his marketing efforts on Europe for the past several years, Ronnie Dawson turns his sights on the American market this time around; American studio, American label, stereo mix and a couple of slower songs thrown into the stew for variety's sake.

And yet things don't sound all that different on Planet Dawson. The album kicks off with a typically quirky rocker, "Good at Being Bad," which is filled with the odd, slightly dissonant dual guitar arrangements and nervous rhythms that sometimes characterize Dawson's sound. It's a unique style and in Dawson's hands it works. What's always interesting about Dawson's style is the little touches: odd drum arrangements ("Chili Pepper Mama"), strange guitar ideas ("Good at Being Bad," "Rippin' and a Roarin'" and others), and other things that set his style apart from other I-IV-V rockers. New for Dawson is a nice Tex-Mex ballad, "Bad Habit or Two," offering a nice change of pace in the middle of the album.

No real surprises from Dawson this time around, but another solid effort nonetheless. (Yep Roc, P.O. Box 4821, Chapel Hill, N.C. 27515)