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Jeremy - 2008 - "Glow in the Dark"

(61:32, Jam Recordings)


*****
                 

TRACK LIST:                                 

1.  In the Beginning 12:32
2.  Glow in the Dark 5:06
3.  Another Dimension 3:45
4.  Planet Departure 3:45
5.  Electric Warrior 3:13
6.  Indian Sun 5:40
7.  White Horse Rider 4:17
8.  Shimmering Light 3:28
9.  Time Tunnel 3:16
10. The Transfiguration 4:48
11. The Final Act 2:52
12. Endless River 8:50

LINEUP:

Jeremy Morris  guitars, bass; grand piano, synthesizers, Mellotron; drums
Dave Dietrich  drums 
With:
Mark Morris  drums (3)
Erin Butler  violin (2)
Brendan Butler  cello (2)
Guillermo Cazenave  guitar (6)

Prolusion. Based in the USA, JEREMY (Morris) is a highly prolific artist, composer and multi-instrumentalist, with more than 30 albums to his name since his debut in 1984. "Glow in the Dark" is one of the five releases he's made so far in 2008.

Analysis. As a person who until a year ago was completely unaware of the existence of the artist Jeremy Morris, I have become increasingly more fascinated with this artist and his releases ever since: Partially due to the extreme number of recordings he makes annually, but also due to the versatility he's capable of. This is the fourth release by Jeremy I'm dealing with, and this one explores a completely different musical landscape from the three I've come across earlier. This time around, Jeremy explore a highly electronic landscape, with Tangerine Dream and perhaps Vangelis, too, as reference points, then adding style elements similar to what bands like Camel and Hawkwind conjured up in the 70s, with some psychedelic elements mixed in as the icing on the cake. The first two compositions in particular are fascinating excursions, containing some segments with acoustic guitar licks and floating, atmospheric keyboards very much in the manner of Camel with more modern sounding synth dominated parts very close to Tangerine Dream in style. The contrasts between these quite different styles are intriguing in themselves, while mixing them together in this manner and managing to make them come across in cohesive songs is actually rather impressive. And the addition of violin and cello in the second tune Glow in the Dark is nice, giving it just enough character to not sound like the opening track In the Beginning. After this opening pair of quite similar compositions, three pairs of songs of a different kind follow. These pieces aren't connected by style; instead, they are directly connected through sound the first track of the pair continues into the second. These compositional pairs are all pretty similar: the first tune contrasting with the second of the pair, where one is energetic and driving, while the other is mellower in nature. Floating synths are constant features; spacey sound effects are used extensively, and atmospheric guitar soloing is a feature in many of these tracks. In style they have strong similarities with Tangerine Dream, with some elements reminding one of Hawkwind. Of the final four tracks on the album, the first three are connected in a manner similar to the trio of pairs described above. They are even more dominated by synths and electronics, and in style and manner these are close to new age compositions, albeit with spacey textures and sounds adding a psychedelic tinge to the tunes not found in that particular style of music. The final track Endless River continues this stylistic approach, but this time with the piano as the dominating instrument, while the synths are given more of a secondary role in the composition. Overall this adds up to a fascinating album. The last four compositions didn't really grab me though good tunes, but not really captivating for me personally.

Conclusion. The dominating role of synths here, the spacey sounds and the slight psychedelic tinge add up to an album where it's challenging to define a target audience. People into Tangerine Dream as well as Hawkwind may be the ones who will be most likely to find this album interesting; and devotees of spacey electronic music might also want to check out this release.

OMB: September 28, 2008
The Rating Room


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Jeremy


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