The leadoff track, "New York," owes itself to the Boss, and the spirit of Billy Joel lurks within the smart charts and admittedly crisp chorus/hook of "She Don't Have to Know" and elsewhere. Simmons proves he can respectably navigate varied pop styles, adroitly turn phrases, and lay out imaginative lyrical scapes such as on "Last Man Out." What's in short supply is a strong up-front personality: Simmons blends in with his top-flight support players more often than he commands notice. The production rates with the best local work, but that's about the only thing that really stands out.
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