Scott Smith’s “Sum of Life” is folk rock at its finest. Throughout “Sum of Life” Scott Smith weaves in a little tenderness, helping to give these songs a certain charm. His earnest, forthright vocal delivery serves as the album’s core. Lyrically the songs have a sense of reassurance that helps guide them forward. By letting this optimism shine through the songs serve as a kind of comfort. Lush in orchestration the songs vary from the hyperactive giddy work of “Payday” to the soothing sweetness of “The Best Gift”.
Gentle in delivery is the wordless opener “The Sum Of Life”. Particularly fine with its elegant tasteful string work the song teems with life without saying a word. “Eclipsing Moon” begins with a true burst of energy. This energy continues on “Blues Guitar Slinger” where Scott Smith develops a carefully crafted narrative. Shifting into quieter territory is the more introspective languid pace of “Bad Dreams”. By far the highlight of the album is the colorful sound of “Determination”. Aptly named the song contains a great deal of motivation, with longing for love. Showing off his impressive chops is the distorted electric guitar of “Over It Soon”. Ending things on a high energy note is the playful “Messing With Reality”. Full of blistering guitar solos the song simply soars.
Taking on a wide variety of styles, from honky tonk to folk rock to everywhere in between, Scott Smith’s “Sum of Life” is a pure joy.