Joe Pernice is known these days as much for his writing — novels! — as his music career. He’s performed as himself, as the Scud Mountain Boys, as Chappaquiddick Skyline and with his brother Bob as the Pernice Brothers. A firm believer in the old-fashioned album, Pernice turns in a sharp and concise under-35 minute album with just ten cuts to better focus the listener’s attention on what is important. (Writing, after all, is often improved by smart editing.) The first two cuts come banging out of the gate with a manic pop-rock slant that is certainly jarring the first time around. But “Jacqueline Susann” (author of Valley of the Dolls) falls into line with the more serene Pernice-like fare of “We Love the Stage,” “The Loving Kind” and the guitar-dominating “Something for You.” With Peyton Pinkerton supplying the riffs, Pernice has all the support he needs to make something special. The soothing folk harmonies of the title track, the sing-along cheer of “The Great Depression” and the bucolic beauty behind “The End of Faith” make for a gratifying dichotomy between the lyrics and the emotions felt.