Hearing Aide: Keller Williams’ ‘Vape’

Vape, Keller Williams‘ 20th album, is a collection of 10 tracks that flow smoothly and whose sum is greater than any of the individual parts. Quirky vocals and pleasant plucking are aplenty on the new release, which may be best enjoyed relaxing on a lazy summer afternoon.

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One of the two instrumental tunes, “Off Time Chorus Line,” kicks things off and sets a mellow tone that resonates through the album. Unique to the opening jam is some silky electric guitar playing on a mostly acoustic compilation. It’s easy for your mind to wander peacefully like a dove throughout Vape, as the second tune,“Mantra,” iterates.

“She Rolls” tells the story of a girl who surprises a state trooper with a kiss and dances on stage in her underwear. “High and Mighty” reminds us most disputes can be settled by uncorking another bottle of wine, and “Jesus’s Gun” lightly critiques Americans’ obsessions with guns. Williams’ soft style never allows the intensity to escalate too much.

Keller informs listeners that he loves donuts in a way reminiscent to Phil Collins once stating he doesn’t care anymore: “do-nuts, do-nuts; no more, no more.”

He wraps up the album by attesting he loves California…and Virginia…in “Cava.” Throughout Vape, whisks of Williams’ unique storytelling style and ability lead the album along a serene meandering.

Williams describes Vape as “highly concentrated music that can be heated up and inhaled through your ears.”

Be prepared to nod along lightly to the easy-listening album that will transport you to a state of tranquility and can only aptly be described as Keller-esque.

Key Tracks: She Rolls, Jesus’s Guns, Donuts

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