Exposé Online banner

Ashley Reaks — Compassion Fatigue (1-8)
((Not on label) no#, 2014, DL)

by Jon Davis, Published 2014-07-15

Compassion Fatigue (1-8) Cover art

The motivations or plans an artist has when setting about recording an album are not always clear to the listener, and to some extent, not even important — it's the end result that is important. Ashley Reaks often refers to himself as a "collage artist," but this album doesn't really sound like collage, except for the wide variety of sounds used. The "concept" behind Compassion Fatigue (1-8) would probably not be apparent to the listener if it weren't spelled out. It starts out with a one minute track in the key of A, followed by a two minute track in B, a three minute track in C, and so on, up to an eight minute track in G. That's the "(1-8)" part of the title; the "compassion fatigue" part relates to the subject matter. Reaks' lyrics are often quite profane and even brutal, but they are delivered with a cheerful tunefulness that belies the harsh content. The general theme seems to be flagging willingness to treat the unpleasant reality of the world with a forgiving, attitude. Perverts, killers, rapists, and other representatives of civilization's dark side are exposed by bright light, with no punches pulled or nasty bits covered by black bars of censorship. Each track is quite distinct, some featuring female vocals, some with aggressive guitar, tablas, jazzy saxophone, and so on. Many feature rolling circular patterns that twist back upon themselves, skipping or adding beats here and there. The complexity of the music, both rhythmic and harmonic, puts it into the realm of progressive rock, but your enjoyment of the music will also be determined by your tolerance for obscene lyrics. Reaks certainly has a serious artistic intent behind those crude words, but this kind of "Piss Christ" art is not for everyone.


Filed under: New releases, 2014 releases

Related artist(s): Ashley Reaks

More info
http://ashleyreaks.bandcamp.com/album/compassion-fatigue-1-8

Latest news

2018-11-16
The Seventeenth Dream of Dr Sardonicus Festival Tickets Now Available – Fruits de Mer Records and their merry crew of psychedelic explorers are getting set to present the next The Seventeenth Dream of Dr. Sardonicus Festival. The dates are set for August 2-4, 2019 at The Cellar Bar in Cardigan, Wales. They've also announced that the legendary Groundhogs will top the bill. » Read more

2018-11-02
Charles O'Meara (C.W. Vrtacek) RIP – A true musical original has left us. Charles O'Meara, who recorded under the name C.W. Vrtacek, was a wild-card musical talent, ranging from complex progressive rock to introspective modern compositions, with stops at many places inbetween. » Read more

2018-10-17
Eurock Documentary Seeks Funding – We've been fans and fellow travelers with Archie Patterson and his Eurock project on the journey to discover great music. After many years of promoting and trying to spread the word,a new phase is beginning: a documentary film. Things like this don't just happen, and money does not magically appear to make it happen, so it's up to the fans to get it done. » Read more

2018-09-29
Marty Balin RIP – One of the architects of the 60s psychedelic sound of San Francisco has died at the age of 76. Marty Balin was a singer, songwriter, and guitarist who was one of the founders of Jefferson Airplane. After the split of the original Airplane, Balin went on to form the highly successful Jefferson Starship. » Read more

2018-09-25
Help the Psychic Equalizer Avoid Extinction – Last year we reviewed the debut album by Psychic Equalizer, a musical project of Hugo Selles. He's now working on the ambitious follow-up to that release, and is seeking funding from listeners around the world. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Divine Baze Orchestra - Once We Were Born – The Divine Baze Orchestra is a new Swedish heavy progressive rock band with a 70s retro sound. Oliver Eek (guitars, backing vocals) and Christian Eklöf (drums, percussion) formed the band in 2003....  (2008) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues