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Re: My Review of Accidental Grace Notes Album by Raymond Scott Woolson - Songs.

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  • Jen
    Hey RSW - I tried to post a song-by-song review last night, but Yahoo Groups was acting up and not letting me post anything...so without further ado - Song by
    Message 1 of 5 , Apr 14 12:51 PM
      Hey RSW - I tried to post a song-by-song review last night, but Yahoo
      Groups was acting up and not letting me post anything...so without
      further ado -

      Song by song; part review; part description; just my impressions, with
      my being possibly a bit off in categorizing what the 'sounds' actually
      are:

      1. Jubilate Deo - Starts off with a whistling-firecracker-type sound,
      then stately, melancholy, but bright guitars come in, sounding almost
      cello or pan-flute-like. Quickly chiming, higher-pitched guitar,
      alternating between 2 notes, is added to slow-churning mix, and then
      strummed acoustic guitar forms part of the backdrop. Mid-way, there
      is a break from the bright guitars and a child's voice can be heard
      briefly...then slowly, the stately guitars pick up pace again, along
      with a guitar-wash sound...and ends with a bit of guitar-sheen noise
      and twittering birds, which segues into 2nd song...very beautiful and
      relaxing.

      2. Selina's Bonfire - A child's voice can be heard exclaiming in
      delight, then a more mournful, slowly-swirling, space guitar sound
      forms against a steady drumbeat, slowly building up a looming, hollow-
      sounding, hanging soundscape (kinda like Slowdive and Malory), then a
      heart-tugger guitar line brightens and ascends in a yearning, wistful
      way, trying to reach a pinnacle...then there is a break in song where
      the strummed-guitar background comes into the forefront for a time,
      then the drums take up again, and the down-beat guitars, and then that
      sadly-beautiful guitar line. The ending of the song is a bit scary
      (at least with headphones on) because at 1st it sounds like a fizzling
      firework, but the sound then turns into a rush of 'downed plane' noise
      that fades out before impact - one of the best songs on the album, I
      think.

      3. The Audubon Print - This is the dynamic, 'up-tempo' song of the
      album, and another beautiful one; that's some very muscular drumming
      for a drum machine! LOL The song is propelled by the drumbeat, and
      wavery guitar notes ( a bit Lush-like) pick out a delicately pleasant,
      repetitive refrain. Slower, bright guitar notes come in over that -
      and what could have been a muddle, remain a clear, but intricate
      affair that plays lightly and sweetly, like an aural rising-
      souflee...then even *more* guitars kick in and harmonize against the
      preceding sounds. The song ends with forest-at-night owl and insect
      sounds.

      4. Awake and Dreaming - An apt song title, as a softly shimmering
      beat sways like shifting sand, and a lightly-played steel guitar calls
      and is answered by a 2nd, island-sounding guitar...then a 3rd guitar
      comes in, and maybe even a 4th guitar, picking out a gentle pattern of
      notes. This is a lay-back-on-beach, stare at palm trees and ocean
      type of song; it's like a cousin to Slowdive's foray into guitar-
      electronica sound at the end of Souvlaki album. Nice to listen to at
      the end of a long work-day. :)

      5. While the Heavens Wheeled Above Us - This song has a slower beat,
      with a laid-back feel and liquidy guitar-lines (but with some frisson
      too) that sound round and blue-note, picking out a pretty, slowly-ever-
      shifting pattern in the forefront and some wash of noise that's hard
      to describe - whooshing spaceships, perhaps? A little Pale Saints in
      feel, but with a more simple structure and prettier sounding - it's
      easy to imagine Meriel singing to this song.

      6. Cantate Domino - Starts off with kid exclaiming, then a slow-
      tempo beat rises, and the vibe is a little too 80s, New Age for my
      tastes. There are reedy, flute-like guitar sounds that sound hollowed-
      out, like pan-pipes. The background sound is a little to simplistic
      and repetitive, and just too slow...but then the song builds up steam
      mid-way with a fuller, brighter sound and wind-tunnel, swirling
      noises, like a slow dawning...

      7. At Length for Hatching Ripe He Breaks the Shell - Cocteau Twins-
      like in title and song...There is a definite C. Twins vibe in the
      crystal guitar sounds, and a Slowdive-like, bright, ascending/
      descending guitar sound. Liz Fraser could pop in at any time to trill
      and coo along, but unfortunately, that doesn't happen. LOL There is
      a short break in the song where a too-80s-sounding electric guitar
      chord progression occurs, but then it's drowned out by 90s distorted,
      noisy-guitar part (My Bloody Valentine/Jesus and Mary Chain territory,
      for a little bit), then everything mixes together coherently -except
      that I still don't like that 80s electric guitar line...

      8. And the Loneliest Road is the One that Leads Home - Hmmm...could
      that be a The Smiths song title? ;) Mourning dove calls and insect
      sounds greet the ear, then, again, there is an 80s vibe that I just
      don't like, with squelchy guitar lines throughout the song. On top of
      this are the beautiful, stately guitars of previous songs, and a
      slightly wavery steel guitar sound, then burnished washes of noise in
      background...and it all repeats round for a bit, then ends with birds
      twittering. Not bad in the least; I just have some kind of strange
      aversion to that electric guitar sound in this song and the previous
      one...

      Just my take on the songs. It's amazing what can be created with
      talent and a home-studio! :D

      Jen

      --- In Stratosphere_Fanzine@yahoogroups.com, rswappleton@... wrote:
      >
      > Just when I thought I was going to have to start advertising my
      latest CD
      > as "the most ignored release of 2006"...
      >
      > Thanks for the kind and creative words, Jen. If I didn't already own
      a
      > copy of this album, your review would have tweaked my interest
      enough to
      > go looking for one.
      >
      > --- RSW
      > The Niagara Frontier
      > www.raymondscottwoolson.com
      >
    • rswappleton@juno.com
      Pan-pipes!?!? Ye gods! Jen, your song by song comments were pretty instructive to read. Very rarely does anybody ever tell me specifically what they like or
      Message 2 of 5 , Apr 17 8:49 PM
        Pan-pipes!?!? Ye gods!

        Jen, your song by song comments were pretty instructive to read. Very
        rarely does anybody ever tell me specifically what they like or don't
        like about my goofy little guitar songs. I thought of writing comments to
        your comments, but maybe that would be taking myself too seriously.

        Anyway, thanks much. Your descriptions were very accurate. In fact,
        dead-on target most of the time. Except maybe for that pan-pipe remark.
        :) But at least you didn't make any wise-cracks about that prominent
        Abba-esque disco cymbal on one of the tracks.

        --- RSW
        The Niagara Frontier
        www.raymondscottwoolson.com
      • jdloc4@aol.com
        Aaahhh...Sorry! I guess I got the musical instrument wrong...I m thinking of the bamboo flute maybe?? What is the name of the cut-up, hollow bamboo pieces
        Message 3 of 5 , Apr 18 9:29 AM
          Aaahhh...Sorry!  I guess I got the musical instrument wrong...I'm thinking of the bamboo flute maybe??  What is the name of the cut-up, hollow bamboo pieces that are tied together to form a flute?   The sound given off is reedy, round, melancholy...?  If it's not what I'm aiming at, what did you use on the song Cantate Domino for that sound I'm *trying* to describe?  LOL
           
          Jen
           
          -----Original Message-----
          From: rswappleton@...
          To: Stratosphere_Fanzine@yahoogroups.com
          Sent: Mon, 17 Apr 2006 23:49:47 -0400
          Subject: Re: [Stratosphere_Fanzine] Re: My Review of Accidental Grace Notes Album by Raymond Scott Woolson - Songs.

          Pan-pipes!?!? Ye gods!
          
          Jen, your song by song comments were pretty instructive to read. Very
          rarely does anybody ever tell me specifically what they like or don't
          like about my goofy little guitar songs. I thought of writing comments to
          your comments, but maybe that would be taking myself too seriously.
          
          Anyway, thanks much. Your descriptions were very accurate. In fact,
          dead-on target most of the time. Except maybe for that pan-pipe remark.
          :) But at least you didn't make any wise-cracks about that prominent
          Abba-esque disco cymbal on one of the tracks.
          
          --- RSW
          The Niagara Frontier
          www.raymondscottwoolson.com
          
          
          
           
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