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TRACK LIST: 1. Preface 3:01 2. Skylines 4:33 3. Eyes 4:51 4. Drifting 3:52 5. Pipe Dream 2:13 6. Mr. Inc 5:16 7. Eve Said Newfair Flik 5:50 8. Paranoid Euphoria 5:02 9. Discarded 6:31 10. Sign of Surrender 4:06 11. Shades of Day 6:32 12. No Voice 8:53 13. World & Dreams 6:20 14. Morning Light 3:29 15. Situations 1:11 All tracks: by Newfair Flik. Produced & engineered by DiVita & Simone. LINE-UP: Joe DiVita - bass & lead guitars; drums; programming Dan Simone - keyboards; rhythm & acoustic guitars; vocals
Prolusion. Sorry for the loose prolusion to the review, but I have really nothing to say here, save the fact that "Situations" is the debut album by the US duo NEWFAIR FLIK.
Synopsis. According to the CD press kit, Joe De Vita plays drums, apart from the other instruments mentioned above. I am not about to dispute that Joe really plays drums, but he doesn't play them on this recording, as there are no drums as such. Perhaps there is a manual 'drumming-typing' via the keyboards of synthesizer. Anyway, all the parts of percussion on "Situations" sound both synthetic and robotic, and I always feel uncomfortable in such situations. However, this is probably the only major drawback here. Well, there is also a very simple and monotonous, completely poor piece: Pipe Dream (5), but the inclusion of it in the album can at least be explained - by the lack of experience. The other two instrumentals: Preface and Discarded are among the best tracks. The stylistic picture of the album is more than merely motley: from a moderately complex electronically symphonic Art-Rock on Preface, Paranoid Euphoria, and No Voice (1, 8, & 12) through a rather extraordinary blend of Art-Rock and Jazz-Fusion on Skylines, Eyes, and World & Dreams (2, 3, & 13) to somewhat of an electronic Doom Metal on Mr. Inc and Discarded (6 & 9). Of course, I've listed only the most evident constituents of the music on these eight. All of them are good tracks, at least compositionally, though the real winners, in my view, are only Skylines and Eyes, following each other. Although the remaining six tracks consist predominantly of symphonic and acoustically symphonic textures, all of them are either ballad-like songs or just ballads with very soulful, warm, and touching vocals. Generally, Dan Simone lead and backing vocals are certainly one of the most agreeable things about this album, which is despite the fact that, often, they very much remind me of those in The Beatles.
Conclusion. Overall, Newfair Flik's debut is noticeably better than >Chris Erickson's one, and not only because there are two men behind "Situations", and not one as in the case of "Sleeping with U" (which is understandable only from an intimate standpoint:-). Nevertheless, I can't rate it high than four stars, even having taken into account that this is the very first recording experience of the project. Furthermore, I don't even know to whom I can recommend such a motley and incoherent album as theirs.
VM: May 12, 2004
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