Dan Wilson has been the man behind the scenes of many popular songs over the years, collaborating on and co-writing some of the biggest tracks in recent times. The front-man for Semisonic (responsible for the hits Secret Smile and Closing Time) has worked with artists including Taylor Swift and Pink, as well as co-writing and co-producing the massive Adele hit Someone Like You.
Collaborations aside, Wilson is a quality solo musician in his own right and brings his experience and ability to his third solo record Love Without Fear. The folk-rock collection sounds genuine and emotionally charged from a man who seems to love what he does.
The record is comforting and soothing as Wilson explores the Universal issue of love and all its unrequited glory. The album is like a story in itself as Wilson sings about being willing to wait for however long it takes for that certain someone (However Long), to being only loved or wanted when it suits that someone (When It Pleases You) to never being able to stay mad at them for long (I Can Never Stay Mad At You) towards the end of the album.
One of the album’s highlights is the upbeat yet melancholy We Belong Together which sees Dan hit high notes seemingly effortlessly as he’s backed by an enthusiastic and impressive instrumental display. Another high point is the album’s closer, Even The Stars Are Sleeping, a beautiful and melodic duet with Missy Higgins. One of the most impressive and positive things about Wilson’s music is the underlying optimism present in most songs, even the ones about break-ups or heart-break.
Wilson may be most well-known and recognised thanks to his brilliant song-writing skills, but it is refreshing to see him come out from behind the scenes and step into the spotlight to show off his musical ability as well. Love Without Fear is a comforting, impressive and mature collection of tracks which should be celebrated and enjoyed by music fans everywhere.