Son (nee Jason) Lambert is a lifelong Portlander, and he’s been writing songs for more than 15 years. His self-titled debut CD contains 11 of them, and I’ve enjoyed the heck out of listening to them over the past three weeks.

With influences such as Ryan Adams, Death Cab for Cutie, Big Star, Led Zeppelin and Gram Parsons, Lambert has carved out his own unique sound that is astral and delicate but with sincere lyrical depth.

Acoustic guitar, piano, organ, gentle drum beats, upright bass, mandolin, synthesizer and well-chosen back-up vocals are the ingredients with which Lambert spins his tales about places like Pretoria, Calif., Nashville, New York City and Coos Canyon.

He also ventures into outer space with the analogous “Cosmonaut.”

“Planets cruise through galactic atmospheres/ Well, I don’t know why I’m here/ Where cyclones of love hover on ghostly moons that float above/ And you’re a cosmonaut lost in a spiral galaxy/ And I’m an astronaut traveling full speed/ And all I see are quasars and pulsars and everything so far away from me.”

“West End Girl” is another relationship exploration. “A thousand memories I have nowhere to send because my East End friend’s a West End girl again,” sings Lambert with his wonderfully fragile, yet sturdy and trustworthy voice.

One of my favorite tracks on the CD is the aching with bittersweet nostalgia “1992 and You.” “Smashing Pumpkins coming on the radio and it’s 1992 and you and you/ Uncle Tupelo is coming on satellite radio and it’s like 1992 and you and you.”

Elizabeth Burd from Over a Cardboard Sea and Joshua Madore lend their vocals to this record, with Madore also on lead guitar on “Nashville.” Other locals include drummer Jason Mallet and Erin St. John of The World’s Finest on mandolin and backing vocals.

“Son Lambert” was produced by engineer Marc Bartholomew at Acadia Studios and mastered at Peapod Studios by Ron Harrity. You can purchase it at Bull Moose Music and online at CD Baby. Lambert’s website is

Aimsel Ponti is a Portland freelance writer. Contact her at: [email protected]