Must have album: John Wesley – a way you’ll never be (2016)

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A new studio album by the one and only John Wesley. His eighth it seems, while he also worked (and still works) with a lot of different artists/bands as guest or tour musician. Busy guy! I really like his previous studio album named Disconnect, so I was very curious about this one!

The album contains ten tracks and is almost one hour long. John Wesley plays the guitars and provides the lead vocals. The present bass sound is something I quite like, thanks to Sean Malone, and Mark Prator is responsible for the drums & percussion. There’s a special dark grunge undertone in most of the tracks, which I really like a lot, and it’s still “proggy” enough for the die-hard prog rock fan. The album carries the same vibe constantly, so if you don’t like that certain vibe you probably don’t like to listen to the album in its entirety. Luckily I adore that dark vibe. This is probably something a lot of Porcupine Tree friends will appreciate. I don’t say that it sounds like Porcupine Tree, but it somehow carries a special atmosphere that you can really appreciate as a PT fan. I think it’s because of some of the guitar riffs and sounds John uses.

It immediately starts in your face with By The Light Of A Sun. My favourite on the album! A Way You’ll Never Be carries a bit of a Rush vibe. You think the song is over after four minutes, but it turns into a long instrumental outro, reminding me a bit of the music the band Amplifier makes. To Outrun The Light is even heavier and darker than the previous two tracks, and I really enjoy the guitar solo. The Revolutionist is a more up tempo track, and carries that Porcupine Tree vibe I mentioned earlier. You would think that Nada is a song that is less heavy than the other ones, but the intro puts you on the wrong track. Another pearl on this album, with lovely heavy guitar sounds and solos, and amazing bass and drum solos too! This would be an amazing live track! The Silence In Coffee (love the title of this one) is a quieter song, but the raw voice of John carries a heavy load. The outro is beautiful and ambient like. Unsafe Space is an instrumental piece, and has that real grungy/bluesy feel. Sun.a.rose sucks you back into the vibe the album carries at the first tracks. Epic has some sort of Black Sabbath meets prog feel, and fades into Pointless Endeavors, which is the last, and also shortest track on the album.

Let me say that John Wesley is a very talented guy! I can understand that not everyone will like his voice, but it shouldn’t be something to avoid this album, so at least give it a try. I have to admit that  the album loses a bit of power at the end, but this is something I would recommend to a lot of people to listen to. A must have!

***** Iris Hidding

  1. By The Light Of A Sun (5:32)
  2. A Way You’ll Never Be (7:18)
  3. The Outrun Of The Light (7:07)
  4. The Revolutionist (5:57)
  5. Nada (5:41)
  6. The Silence In Coffee (5:09)
  7. Unsafe Space (4:17)
  8. sun.a.rose (6:44)
  9. Epic (4:51)
  10. Pointless Endeavors (3:38)

http://www.john-wesley.com/

http://www.insideoutmusic.com/index.aspx

You can also read my review on the website of Progarchy:

https://progarchy.com/2016/09/05/must-have-album-john-wesley-a-way-youll-never-be-2016-grendel-headquarters/

You can listen to the tracks By The Light Of A Sun and To Outrun The Light Here:

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