It’s been five years since Pete Yorn released his charming debut Musicforthemorningafter, which vaulted him to the top of the singer/songwriter charts. Since that time, Yorn has been accused of sounding too bland on his second effort, Day I Forgot, leaving fans wondering if they would ever hear another classic album from him. For Yorn, I’m sure this isn’t the position he would have liked to have been in before releasing Nightcrawler, a collection of 14 songs that, for the most part, is a step in the right direction.
Where Musicforthemorningafter hooked you from the first note, Nightcrawler takes a while to dig its nails in deep. “The Man” is a welcome return to form, highlighted by Yorn’s gift for a pretty melody and Natalie Maines’ backing vocals; the tune resembles what is good on Nightcrawler—simplicity. Where the album stumbles a bit is when Yorn tries to get too pretty with the production (“For Us,” “The Same Thing”), but hey, at least he can’t be categorized as “bland” anymore.