I personally wonder about a person's commitment to their music if they are willing to surrender control of it just to see "what other people do with this material". Can you see Van Gogh offering someone a brush to add some daubs of colour to "Starry Night"? He might do the "Lend my you ear bit" from Shakespeare first, literally; and with a dull palate knife.
Maybe I had all these thoughts because the music on White Limousine left me quite cold. Everything is very competently played and the mix is impeccable but the songs felt like they were trying too hard to be meaningful and emotional.
On a song like the title track "White Limousine" which is supposed to be an up-tempo, anthem style rock number, with the lyrics supplying an ironic counter point, the oomph of emotional commitment to the song isn't there to make it feel like an anthem. It feels like a middle-of-the-road ballad singer trying to sing a rock song.
This album is plagued by "Sincerity" with a capital "S", and reminds me unfortunately far too much of the soft rock that was so popular in the early to mid 1970's, where genuine emotion was a commodity in short supply. It lacks the genuine simplicity of folk music, or the raw energy of rock, and falls into some intermediate void between the two.
Pseudo-poetic lyrics are set against a backdrop of soft synthesized keyboards, muted guitars, bass, and the occasional string arrangement. Lyrics like "Here and there/Haunting my closets and drawers/My evermore, Now and then/Forgetting that everything's changed/I call her name" ("I Don't Believe In Ghosts") aren't about to make Leonard Cohen lose sleep in worry over the competition.
To be fair to Duncan Sheik, maybe it's just his music doesn't appeal to my sensibilities; he's been given good press from loads of other media, but then again I've never been a People magazine person. Perhaps if that's the world you move in, these trite pieces of sophism will appeal to you and you can have fun remixing the material. But to me it would just be a waste of time.