The debut album from Arlington VA-based singer/songwriter Greg Roth, Caught Looking keeps things interesting by touching all kinds of styles, from alt-country ("yes", "12:40 am wine") to blues ("your providence") to cuban ("good heart") to bluegrass ("league bowlers") to new wave ("if you haven't lost your mind") to power pop ("las vegas wedding") and beyond, all with an undying love for catchy tunes.
Comparisons to Elvis Costello aside, this record is/was a labour of love, taking over 2 years to record, mix and master. In all, 18 different local musicians have lent their time and skill to making the album and coloring each song in a unique way. The result is very much a rootsy americana album for the iPod age. To answer what is sure to be a trivia question someday, Arlington VA's own Michael Yugo was the first to wait in line and buy "Caught Looking." So, c'mon. Be like Mike, already.
Roth is the former frontman of DC's short-lived, but well-liked The Jillians, which oddly enough started out as a vaguely Irish band on Van Morrison and Waterboys enthusiats before cranking up the Big Star and aforementioend Elvis Costello to get all british-meets-americana-ish. That band is gone forever, with all five final members living on five separate states, all non-contiguous. Oh well. Before The Jillians, Roth was a member of Philadelphia's Haywood Trout, voted as one of the city's best rock-n-roll bands by the station formerly known as Y-100.
In other news, Roth was the first-ever member of the Mike Holden Band, a former member of Jake Laufer's band, Sherpa Underground, played as a duo with WHAMMY-nominated artist Leah Morgan before she went solo, and apprears on the debut recording by Jackson, Mississippi, blues/rock artist Scott Albert Johnson. The album, Umbrella Man, features two co-compositions by Roth and Johnson and has already won local music awards in Jackson.
CAUGHT LOOKING REVIEWS
OnTap, Sept 2007
"Arlington's Greg Roth slips through a number of deliveries on his debut solo album...Roth has a solid formula for his compositions and doesn't seem to deviate from it, except on a few tracks, "League Bowlers" amongst them. Everything works, often quite well...a competent debut."