Monday, October 28, 2013

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Review: Mike Kershaw - This Long Night (2013)

Artist: Mike Kershaw
Album: This Long Night
Year: 2013
Label: Self released

Review: Diego Camargo

Rate: 

Thoughts: Although Mike Kershaw isn’t a new musician he is new when it comes to releasing records under his own name. He’s been doing so since 2011 and so far he has 2 records, Reason To Believe (2012) and the newest This Long Night (2013).

I’m new to this musician’s work, so my review is focused on This Long Night (2013) alone. This album is pretty much the one that goes along the Symphonic Prog path. Besides having a few more influences I would say that this is the general sound of the album.

This Long Night (2013) begins with the track ‘Miracles’ and I really thought that Mike Kershaw's music would be the classic ‘one man band instrumental poor playing’ case. But that’s not the case really.
The second track ‘Into The Sun’ takes my first impression off the album as this track has vocals and guess what… very good vocals. Including melodic backing vocals all around.
Mike Kershaw’s music turned out to be really interesting, although there’s one thing that bothers me.

By the time of the third track (the longest on the album with 12’37) ‘A Kind Of Hell’ I was sure what was bothering me, it was the drums.
Using programmed drums wasn’t really the best option for Mike’s music, they sound too ‘robotic’, especially in this particular track. ‘A Kind Of Hell’ has many twists and turns and so many interesting ideas and many things are happening in the background all the time. But the drums just can’t follow the music.


While the title track is more of an interlude, the next one ‘Causes’ begins in fade in, and it really seems weird because of that. And once again my complain stays with the drums. Mike has good songs, a real drummer would do wonders to his music.

‘Words Of Love’ is the weirdest track on This Long Night (2013) but at the same time it keeps the same pace of the previous tracks with slow ethereal vocals, space keyboards and rhythm guitars.
‘Spectres’ has a great melody, ELO style. The follow up ‘The Fire’ is dense with a thick atmosphere created by keyboards and bass. I would say that this track is completely Space Rock.
‘Our Journeys Done’ closes the album as a melodic and romantic instrumental piece, a nice one!

Mike Kershaw’s This Long Night (2013) is a very good album, especially if we take into account that it is only his second release. The album has many great ideas and good compositions. Unfortunately, the overall production and especially the drums, down rate the final result.
The drums case is particularly heavy, it can really kill some of the best songs on the album.
But I can honestly say that Mike’s next album will turn out to be a great one. Especially if the points I stated could be solved.

Worth a listen!

Mike was included in our Podcast #24 and you can listen the track 'Into The Sun' HERE.

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