Jonny Lang fans are going to realize from the first notes of Fight for My Soul that this is an entirely new musical direction for the performer who got his start as a 16-year-old blues prodigy. That was half a lifetime ago for Lang, and it’s been seven years since he made a studio album. He’s not the same person and this is not that sound. Instead, fans are treated to great, smooth contemporary soul strongly influenced by Prince and artists like Justin Timberlake than any blues musician. We get original, personal lyrics about real life and real struggles presented in smooth style that emphasizes the vocals and not Lang’s phenomenal guitar playing.There are few guitar solos here, a big departure from the past. Instead, Lang simply lets his superb playing complement his amazing voice and lets the vocals garner the listener’s attention, and what a beautiful and expressive instrument it is.
Jonny Lang is obviously not a kid anymore. He’s a husband and father and when he decided to go in a new direction, he did it with his whole heart. The CD is all about facing choices and surviving change and growing up. For new listeners and old fans with open minds who embrace Lang’s growth and new direction, this is one of the best contemporary soul and pop CDs of the year so far.