CD Reviews

Mostly Autumn - 'Sight Of Day'

Added by Central Electronic Brain     July 04, 2017    
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MA's most rounded and balanced work to date.

ince forming in 1996. the Mostly Autumn sound has evolved and developed over the course of twelve full-length studio albums, from Folk/Progressive Rock heavily influenced by Pink Floyd through to the more traditional Classic Rock format currently employed that still carries a Floyd undercurrent – mainly due to band leader Bryan Josh's guitar tone and delivery style. I've seen the band play live multiple times and their consummate performances and stage craft has been an additional factor in shaping that sound.

'Sight Of Day' is a lengthy piece of work (seventy minutes plus) but I have played it a dozen times and have yet to tire of its appeal. It is MA's most rounded and balanced work to date and sees the band stretching themselves without ejecting any of the musical nuances that have become something of a trademark.

The album contains two epics, the first being the fourteen minute title-track that opens the album, almost like three songs in one. This represents what Mostly Autumn are all about and it's full of subtlety, power and emotion. The performances are fantastic and the extended running time is never an issue. Olivia Sparnnen-Josh's vocals sit well next to Bryan Josh's singing and the down-to-earth lyrics are a refreshing change from those adopted by most song-writers. 'Native Spirit' clocks in at ten minutes and the riff at its heart reminds me greatly of the incessant main theme from John Carpenter's 'They Live' movie. This is Bryan Josh's song in the main and he tops it off with some great guitar work.

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The regular album contains ten tracks and each impacts in a different way. It's nice to hear Chris Johnson showcase his writing and singing talents during 'Changing Lives' and the addition of another voice not only acts as a contrast, but also enhances the harmonies during the other songs. 'The Man Without A Name' and 'Raindown' feature jaw-dropping vocals from Livvy Sparnnen-Josh and are both built around some exquisite keyboard/piano delicacies (courtesy of Iain Jennings?). The limited edition version contains seven extra tracks and the decision surrounding which should make the standard version and which shouldn't must have been difficult.

It is difficult for me to summarise everything I feel about 'Sight Of Day' in just four hundred words and I can't wait to see how some of these songs translate to the live environment when the band tour the UK during 2017.

Dave Bott

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