Subtle, Supple, Jazz-tinged Guitar Magic
Sizzling debut disc from Victor Lee
Surrounding himself with some fine musicians, Victor Lee has crafted a superb debut album, “Strangely Familiar”, released November, 2018.
Victor is an Indiana, USA-based multi-instrumentalist, who brings plenty of skillful melodicism and compositional chops to this pleasing set of guitar-centric tracks.
Keeping things crisp
Aside from the title track, which closes out this album with some majestic passages featuring soaring guitar, outstanding piano and keyboard work, and effective mood-changes, most of the tunes clock in at less than four minutes or so.
Yet there is plenty of variety
There is a lot packed into each track.
Album opener “The Way Home” leads off with crowd sounds giving way to deft, melodic guitar in a jazzy, upbeat format.
“Double Agent” comes in with brash, crisp guitar and snappy tempo, yielding to laid-back, jazzy piano, then that lovely, singing guitar.
“Mayday”, “Never Too Late”, and “Second Chance” reveal a riff-heavy, rocking side to Mr. Lee’s playing, while “More Than Words” brings an emotional, gentle and tender mood, with moody, clean guitar chording.
But that title track!
First, just pause to appreciate that lovely, near-classical opening that builds majestically, giving way to heartfelt piano, and returning to majestic, soaring guitar-led passages.
Arch Echo’s Joey Izzo and Richie Martinez, keyboards and drums, respectively, bring a near symphonic grandeur to several passages here, and deserve special mention.
The twinkling solo piano interlude brings this fine track, and fine album, to a close.
Cast of Characters
Victor Lee: Guitars, Piano, Keyboards, Bass (“Detour”, “Mayday”, “Strangely Familiar”), Vocals (“Strangely Familiar”)
Funtwo; Guest guitar solo on “Double Agent”
Andreas Sjøen (Umpfel): Drums (“Double Agent”, “Second Chance”, “Never Too Late”)
Nick Acker (Kaguu): Drums (“The Way Home”, “Detour”)
Richie Martinez (Arch Echo): Drums (“Strangely Familiar”)
Jake Steffes: Bass (“The Way Home”, “Never Too Late”)
Joel Schwallier (Kossuth): Bass (“Double Agent”)
Gwanghee Lee: Bass (“Second Chance”)
Joey Izzo (Arch Echo): Keyboards (“Strangely Familiar”)
In sum, an impressive debut you must check out
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My reviews, and some other musical things, including some of my own music.