February 15, 2008

Don Airey: A Light in the Sky

When you have been exposed to heavy duty keyboard players at an impressionable age, changes are that you will never get over it. Don Airey has been pounding the keys since 1972, playing with Ozzie, Colloseum II and now Deep Purple. He is a busy guy and had to squeeze recording of his new album A Light in the Sky in between live DP shows and tons of other commitments.

Like so many prog inclined symfo metal rockers Don Airey likes space. Outerspace. The big time out there. It's the theme of his first solo album in 20 odd years. Hence you get a Floydesque instrumental like Andromeda M31 where guitarist Rob Harris emulates David Gilmour and Steve Morse in one giant sweep. Most of the tracks are instrumentals, the actual "songs" fall into the heavy metal category with capable singers such as Carl Sentance, Danny Bowes and Harry James. Drummer Harry James? Yep, he is the vocalist on the space oddity Rocket to the Moon, a 1950s novelty hit. Lidia Baich laid down some great folk-inspired violin ensuring that a track like Into Orbit really takes off.

Don Airey: Light in the Sky

A Light in the Sky is a cohesive sounding album. Airey insisted on people actually being in the Chapel Studios in Lincolnshire where the album was recorded: "About everything is a first or second take, all of the Hammond playing and most of the synth and guitar solos were recorded live. I knew I didn’t want to make one of those Fileshare albums in which everyone sends their parts by email."

The music is huge, but the lyrics are below par -- "I'm sighing / You're crying / We're dying" (Love You Too Much) is just plain childish.

There are plans to tour behind the album in April. Nothing definite though.

Tracks:
  1. Big Bang
  2. Ripples in the Fabric of Time
  3. Shooting Star
  4. Space Troll Patrol
  5. Andromeda M31
  6. Endless Night
  7. Rocket to the Moon
  8. Lift Off
  9. Love You Too Much
  10. Cartwheel
  11. Sombrero
  12. Into Orbit
  13. A Light in the Sky
  14. Pale Blue Dot
  15. Metallicity
  16. Big Crunch
  17. Till the End

Pre-order Light in the Sky from mascotrecords.com. Release date: February 22.

» donairey.com

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