Jim Allchin: Overclocked Review

In his second release, Overclocked, Jim Allchin demonstrates a true mastery of his instrument, but lacks a strong vocal performance. Allchin – a former Microsoft Executive turned musician – is a soulful guitarist whose playing is at times reminiscent of Eric Johnson’s and Eric Clapton’s playing.

Two of the best tracks on the album are instrumentals (“Fall” and “Opening My Eyes to Love”). On both tracks, Allchin’s impeccable technique meets up with his soulful playing to provide two of the greatest ballads of the year. Allchin invites guest vocalist Keely Whitney to sing on “One for the Money” and the result is the only truly enjoyable vocal performance of the album. Whitney’s voice has the strength and presence that Allchin’s lacks, and, when combined with Allchin’s stellar guitar performance, the track demonstrates the blues in its finest form. Allchin shows his jazz influence with a solid track in “Willow Tree,” but overall his vocals lack the presence and strength required for him to be considered a great blues rock singer.

Ultimately, Allchin’s vocals are a distraction on most of the tunes, particularly driving rock numbers such as “Overclocked” and “Don’t Tell Me What to Do.” Quite simply, Allchin would be better off finding a singer to team up with, rather than continuing to provide his own vocals.

This album really is a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde type album; the instrumental tracks and his tracks with Keely Whitney are truly delightful, yet some of his own vocals are quite frankly hard to listen to, particularly “Don’t Tell me What to Do,” which has no flow and should have been left off the album. Most of the rest of the tracks fall in the middle and are really nothing special, but aren’t terrible either.

The Review: 7/10

Can’t Miss Tracks

– One for the Money
– Fall
– Just Playin With Me
– Opening My Eyes to Love

The Big Hit

– Just Playin With Me

Review by Nik Rodewald

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