Andrew Rodriguez is extremely talented. He can play a gazillion instruments, and he can play 'em well. He has a voice that's plaintive enough to leave welts on your heart but rough enough to pull off a Neil Young number. He's a solid sideman for the likes of Melissa Auf der Maur, but the ex-Bodega mainman is at heart a fine, fine songwriter. Here Comes The Light finally gives his psych-infused tunes the treatment they deserve, moving beyond the tentative Elliott Smith frameworks of Bodega's Bring Yourself Up debut without veering into the too-polished turf of 02's Without A Plan. Rodriguez layers his swirling guitar pop with liberal doses of synths, organs and percussion lifted from classic Kinks and Zombies ditties, matching his vocals with well-chosen backups by Angela Desveaux. Older material, like the lazy-day version of Good Bad Kids, stands up to newer stuff like Dreaming Of It (which borrows from Wilco's Heavy Metal Drummer). At times there are too many elements in play -- a couple of pared-down ballads would've added nice variety -- but it's a cohesive, great overall album.
Andrew Rodriguez releases his CD March 1 at the Drake.