Daryll Dobson Healing Intentions (Midnight Lamp Cybermedia Arts, 1997) Fusion guitarist Daryll Dobson released Healing Intentions in 1997, following up his previous light fusion record Studio 21 and <--- his electric fusion record The Mind Electric, which featured L. Shankar and Kenny Kirkland. Healing Intentions regroups some of the less famous members of the band on The Mind Electric, including Delmar Brown, Kenwood Dennard, and Rael Grant, to play electric fusion with subtle ethereal touches over a driving backbeat. Despite the pseudo-metaphysical framing of Healing Intentions by the liner notes as a journey into space, the driving yet melodic fusion still retains relevance for listeners who aren't interested in those mystic trappings. The music includes driving pieces, like "With My Wings" and "We Cannot Hearů The Killing Noise," framing more subdued songs like "Peace of Mind" and "Be the Light," moving thematically between the harder style and the softer one. Dobson includes two cover songs, Marvin Gaye's "Trouble Man" and a slowly building, twelve minute version of the Hendrix classic "Third Stone from the Sun." These songs fit musically, and they fit the album theme as the work of deceased visionaries Dobson suggests are still watching down on the earth, much like the celestial viewpoint suggested by "Third Stone" and described in the metaphysical journey in the liner notes. The drums sound crisp and alive, and Gerry Brown lays down thick grooves reminiscent of Dennis Chambers through the entire record, including the tastefully short drum solo "Wings of Rhythm." The bass purrs with a wooden growl, adding a wide sonic foundation that Dobson's older CD Studio 21 lacks. The clean piano, and especially the organ on "End of Time" and "Third Stone," colorfully back the guitar. Dobson's electric guitar shines at singing leads like "With My Wings" and "We Cannot Hearů The Killing Noise," and at plucked clean passages like "Peace of Mind," complimented by acoustic guitar. Most of Dobson's synth work subtly compliments the playing by the live musicians, such as the chords on "We Cannot Hearů," but the unnecessary and poorly voiced synth horn accents in "With My Wings" detract from the crisp, natural tones of all the real instruments. Fortunately, Dobson uses better placement and sound with the synth parts in the other up-tempo songs, and the tasteful one minute synth solo track "Our Journey Within," providing a better showcase for the playing and sound of the live instruments and musicians. Healing Intentions grooves with mystic intensity through driven vamps and mellow ebbs, and Dobson's talents shine when surrounded by skillful guest musicians. Reviewed by Scott Andrews [firstname.lastname@example.org] More Info:http://www.darylldobson.com/
EER-MUSIC.com Editor notes: Dobson's The Mind Electric is a must-hear fusion CD. Get it while you still can!
Daryll Dobson: Studio 21 (Crazz Records, 1994) Fusion guitarist Daryll Dobson released Studio 21 back in 1994, a record of light, R&B flavored instrumental fusion with one song featuring a guest vocalist. Since then, Dobson has released several other electric fusion records, including Healing Intentions and Mind Electric. The first half of Studio 21 is dreamy light fusion, with songs that seem to run together with similar sounding phrases. The guest vocals on "Down to This" and the soprano saxophone on several tracks help to revive this sluggishness and add a more distinctive character to those songs. The music picks up on the second half of the record, with snappy angular piano chording on "Now" and shifting chords under soaring electric guitar on "The Message." The acoustic guitar piece "Earth Sighs" is the album's strongest moment, where the synth drums and other unwieldy trappings are stripped away, leaving only a brooding melody and Dobson's skillful guitar work. Dobson plays or sequences all instruments, except the piano on two tracks and soprano sax on three. The guitar playing is sharp, but the drum programming on several tracks feels stiff and awkward. The synth patches used for drums and some keyboards, such as the hand clap snare drum sound, sound dated and amateurish, even by 1994 standards. However, the tones from the real instruments like guitar and soprano saxophone ring clear and true. Daryll Dobson's Studio 21 is a solid work in the lighter fusion / R&B style, showing potential but room for improvement. Reviewed by Scott Andrews [email@example.com] More Info:
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