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Levi Kreis - One of the Ones Review
by Rob Nipe

I'm a television junkie. I watch too much. I've got a TiVO and it is almost always on the verge of erasing something if I don't watch it. That's why when I saw the chance to review the new album from Levi Kreis as seen on NBC's The Apprentice, I jumped. I don't know if anyone else watched this episode. In it, the two teams had to pick an artist, write a song, have that song performed on XM Radio where it is voted on by listeners to find a winner. Confusing? Maybe, but-just think-that is a one sentence synopsis of an hour long show and I think some slack may be called for. All you need to take from this is that little Levi was good. I don't think I even saw him perform the whole song on the episode but I was left with the feeling that I had just seen something first-rate. It couldn't have been more than a third of the song to tell you the truth. One of the team members on the next episode sang more of that winning song than I heard Levi sing in the entire previous episode. There was a tangible excitement that Levi brought to the music that made me want to hear more. Or, at least, I thought I did.

This album is such a disappointment. Nine out of the ten tracks on the album are Levi and his piano. That's it. No back up singers. No drums. No bass. No cowbell. It is an incredibly hard thing to pull off. The artist is left out there exposed for all the listeners to hear. The album's success or failure ultimately falls on that artist's shoulders. And when-after the third listen-I still couldn't tell one track from another without checking what track number I was on, I knew that Levi needed to look out. I'm sure there are people out there who will listen to this album and love it. There always are. I just hope that there are enough of them to warrant a second album because I'm sure that he can do much, much better than this.

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