Joined: June 2004
||Posted: Dec. 18 2005, 15:01
Congratulations Mike to a really good album! I like Light & Shade!
Here is the truth according to The Man. (I could have added this to some already existing topic, but I want to reach Mike himself!.
Yes, I was very suspicious after having read Mike's somewhat perculiar descriptions of the tracks. Add to this the rather uninspired output in the period 1996-2000. Mike must have been rather tired of making music here, and although I know that many members of this forum loves TBIII and Guitars, I consider exactly these records as quite hasty, if not just plain bad. ... Fast cheap solutions, sloppy guitar playing (is it really Mike?), and few ideas. (TBIII is however much better live).
And then came the fantastically boring Millenium Bell! My God. Mike claiming that “MB is what my entire life has been about”. I was worried...
But it feels like Mike became more inspired again with Tres Lunas. Despite the Bulgarian noseflute [or is it a saxophone?]. Tracks like NoMansLand and BackToTheOrigin are great. Here, the guitars communicate again. Then, the re-recording of Tubular Bells turned out to be far more interesting and well-played then I ever would have thought, just listen to tracks like Bases, Finale, and Ambient Guitars!
So when Light & Shade came out, I didn’t know exactly what to expect. Mikes descriptions certainly didn’t reassure confidence. Perhaps one or two tracks being quite listenable, but with the rest of it being just synth-pad muzak... ?
Listen carefully now: it takes a *** true genius *** to come up with the powerful voices of Resolution, and the two lead guitars singing out the TearsOfAnAngel lead theme, not to mention the beutiful vocaloid lyrics in exactly that song! Surfing is just as genius, a completely unbelivebly catchy song, still avoiding being mainstream. These three tracks are more powerful than Mike’s entire output 1996-2000 if you ask me.
Add to this the magical OUR FATHER, the most outstanding track on the entire double-CD! That lyrical somewhat sad guitar, SINGING for us, its tricky melody, all those bended notes (like the ones occuring exactly at 02.00), ... it talks right into my heart! Touching! MIKE ARE YOU READING THIS? That wonderful piano main theme, simple but lyrical ... and the piano and guitar teamwork! Fitting perfectly together. The guitar adds very much dimension to that piano tune. Great! Angelique is also quite nice, I like it. And Blackbird is also kind of touching (I usually don’t like Mike’s pure piano pieces very much). First, I didn’t think very highly about Sunset, but now I must confess, it has a nice mood and the guitars are expressing something. It is a touching piece.
Mike is PLAYING again!
I most confess that FirstSteps took me a while to enjoy, I couldn’t understand why anyone would like to reuse that simple theme again but now it has grown upon me to that degree that I find the piece fascinating. Kind of strange that piece, but in a good way... What does Mike want with this piece? It is different from other longer MO compositions... A wonderful moment is after minute or so, when the strings add those lovely chords to the simple guitar tune. There is much power in Quicksilver and Slipstream as well, although being a bit simpler in structure than the above mentioned tracks. I like them, and play them very loud!
Mike you are still going strong!