There are some things in life which always seem to be true and you just can't explain why. For me, confusing the word "Barista" with the pro wrestler turned actor "Batista" is always going to be one of those. I have to sort of retrain my brain to realize that this is not an album by the former professional wrestler. But it is definitely interesting to me that someone would name their musical project Barista because of what that term means and how that could sort of tie in with the music. Is this the type of CD you'd find for sale at Starbucks? That just seems like the easiest possible tie-in to me: buying a Barista CD from a Barista.
When this first starts off I think about the band Dishwalla and how much I loved them when they were first hitting the scene. Not enough bands take that approach to music that Dishwalla did and I wonder why, but hearing it here, in Barista, just makes me happy. With a little bit of a country twang this just goes on to have that rock sound to it which is kind of that blue collar/Americana feel but also on that rock which is on the radio side as well. It's working class rock n roll, if you will, along the lines of such great names as John Mellencamp and Bruce Springsteen. It's just that type of rock like "Summer of '69" where you can just put it on and sing along with all of the words.
"Disco Sun" has a bit more of a groove to it, like a little Santana boogie, and then there is just killer guitar work on "In a Dream" which asks the question "Was it all a dream?" On "Watching the End Being, Part 1 (Coffee Song)" we get into some metal like Fozzy and there is a line "Pour another cup of coffee" which just seems to go along with the theme of the song and even band name. I feel like if you named your band Barista and we didn't get at least one coffee reference it would be disappointing. "Walk in My Shoes" begins with dark acoustics and piano. It becomes dreamy and chill while we make our way to the end with "Be Mine" which has slight country hints and reminds me of The Wallflowers.
The idea behind this "Open Sesame" album though is that it's so vast that it was actually put into five different volumes, this being the first. While this does stand well on its own- and you could pull songs out as singles on the radio- I'm really curious to hear now how the mood switches it up between each of the other songs on the rest of the volumes. There is also that idea of one day being able to just sit down and listen to all five volumes in a row and feeling that effect. But Barista has started something here which is mostly within different aspects of rock music and I'd like to see where it takes us next.