Picks and Pans Review: Wanted Man

updated 02/13/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 02/13/1995 AT 01:00 AM EST

Paul Kelly

Widely considered Down Under's best songwriter, Paul Kelly, who used to front Paul Kelly and the Messengers before going solo in 1991, had difficulty catching the same high-profile wave that brought us mega-Aussie acts like INXS and Midnight Oil in the late '80s. But now he has at last truly arrived on our shores.

Kelly has a distinct talent for telling stories through piercing lyrics and contagious folk-based melodies. On Wanted Man he has gracefully woven blues, jazz and power-pop into a lush tapestry of songs. Now if only he can find the audience he deserves. On "Maybe this Time for Sure," a paean to optimism, Kelly sings, "Maybe this time for sure/Things are gonna work out different/Not the way they did before." Let's hope so. (Vanguard)

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