Joshua Radin  goes for a certain irony on his third album, "The Rock and the Tide," ending the set with a reprise of "Brand New Day," the cheeriest track from 2008's "Simple Times." His declaration that "I'll be OK" feels like a comfortable affirmation that comes on the tail of a dozen emotionally hopscotching tracks. The material ranges from quiet, heart-rending paeans like "Think I'll Go Inside" and the slightly Celtic-flavored "Wanted" to the Bob Dylan -esque diatribe "You're Not as Young." And there are some moments of ebullience in "We Are Only Getting Better" and the soulful "You Got What I Need." The set also demonstrates how Radin has become more comfortable with the rock side of things. Producer Martin Terefe helps guide him through the rockabilly-styled "Nowhere to Go," the garagey three-chord slam of "The Ones With the Light" and the aggressively rhythmic title cut. "Simple Times" may have benefited from sympathetic guest vocalists Meiko  and Erin McCarley , but "The Rock and the Tide" is all Radin in some of his most carefully nuanced and confident vocal performances yet.
- Album Review