Ezra — Shapes
(Cyclops 017, 1994, CD)
by Mike Grimes, Published 1996-03-01As heavily featured as keyboards are on Shapes, It is surprising that Ezra is a three piece outfit consisting of vocals/guitar, bass, drums — and no keyboards. In fact, I'd say that the keys are one of the highlights of the album. Often the tracks are assembled in such a way that they are thick yet sparse (if that makes any sense) — a wall of sound, but a lot of the keys especially are just chordal padding and doubling of the bass, and don't really add anything harmonically. With their simple arrangements and up-tempo writing, they remind me of Cheap Trick or The Police in places. The clean recording quality and smooth production certainly add to this. The songs sound like straight ahead rock numbers during the parts where there are vocals, but they stretch out and do more interesting things while in instrumental sections. If the songs had more diversity during those vocal sections, the tracks would be stronger for it. This is especially pertinent given the weakness of some of the lyrics — which really stands out in several places. Ezra is one of those bands which I'm sure are playing well below their abilities most of the time. I think they could make a better album by experimenting more in the vocal sections and varying their arrangements.
Related artist(s): Ezra
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more
Chick Corea RIP – The sad news has reached us that Chick Corea has Returned to Forever, so to speak. The innovative keyboardist and composer died on February 9 at the age of 79. With a career that spanned from the 60s until shortly before his death, Corea touched many listeners with the incredible variety of music he produced in his lifetime. » Read more
Asia Minor Third Album on the Way – On January 29, AMS records will be releasing the long-awaited third album by classic Turkish-French band Asia Minor. Released last year in Japan, this will be the widespread debut of Points of Libration. The album features original members Setrak Bakirel (vocals, guitar) and Eril Tekeli (flute, guitar). » Read more
Harold Budd RIP – Harold Budd, one of pre-eminent American composers of avant-garde and minimalism, has died of complications from the coronavirus. Budd came to prominence in the 70s, championed by Brian Eno on his Obscure Records label, with music that blended academic minimalism with electric jazz and electronic music. Much of Budd's best known work was done in collaboration with other artists, including Eno, Daniel Lanois, Robin Guthrie, Andy Partridge, John Foxx, Jah Wobble, and many others. » Read more