Morris Quinlan Experience, The - The Morris Quinlan Experience

Year of Release: 1999
Label: Ted Smith Records
Catalog Number: TEDSCD01
Format: CD
Total Time: 00:00:00

Twenty seconds into this album and immediately the name Blue Aeroplanes came to mind. I remember being enormously impressed the first time I heard their song "Jacket Hangs," intrigued not in the least by the lead singer who ? didn't sing! This was poetry set to music which is exactly where we can situate The Morris Quinlan Experience.

Set in a musical atmosphere which breathes a lot of easy listening Pink Floyd, the voice of Simon Macken doesn't sing but tells stories which kind of makes me think of a higher pitched Leonard Cohen. I couldn't capture it better than in their very own words: "Mix up the views from several disconnected rooms. Think of one night stands in small seaside towns where it's always raining and always November. Picture faded wallpaper and saleroom furniture, a cardboard suitcase flung open on a narrow single bed. Imagine the girls, the painted eyes which deceived him into thinking he no longer stood apart. Stroll through milky thoroughfares of a wet suburban night. I am all his wasted years, the street seems to proclaim. And I am all his pointless tears, echoes a falling drop of rain."

Needless to say ALL attention goes towards the vocals here depicting the dark, sarcastic Scottish way of life with rain as a constant partner. Obviously the best companion to extra underline the intimacy of certain topics is the acoustic guitar. Yet Simon Macken has added the right number of "guests" in order to wrap the various songs into unique musical wrapping paper. In "Colder Nights" a fabulous trumpet extra underlines the cold solitude. The guitar in "The Raven Trick" sort of reminds me of Alan Parsons on his Tales Of Mystery And Imagination album (which also holds the track "The Raven"!). Acoustic bass is the spine for the jazzy swing of "Break Loose My Animal Dust" whilst thick layers of growing ambient soundscapes form the concrete on which "Sacred Whore Blues" is built. The album closes with the fragile "Where Each Of These Angels."

The Morris Quinlan Experience certainly is a must for those of you who love poetry yet find the atmosphere is too solemn, too quiet. By means of the exact musical background the impact of the lyrics is extra emphasized resulting in a unique experience. This is "lights out" music with a hundred tiny candles as soulmates. Wot an experience!

If you want to find out for yourself you can experience the entire album via Real Audio files at the band's website (see below).

[That website no longer exists... I suspect the band no longer exists either -ed. Jan 2006]

You And The Night / Waiting Midnight Train / Colder Nights / The Raven Trick / Quiet Streets / Come Hail, Rain Or Shine / Break Loose My Animal Dust / Sacred Whore Blues / When Each Of These Angels

Simon Macken - words and voice, keyboards
David Maughan - guitars, Hammond organ, keyboards, percussion
Alan Morton - electric and acoustic basses, keyboards, percussion
Neil Ramshaw - drums
Steve Summers - saxophones
George Biddle - violin
Clare Brizzolara - backing vocals
James Bullock - drums
D'Eva - flute
Averr Graham - oboe
Jay Graham - trumpet
Kerry Green - backing vocals
Sue Kay - backing vocals
Tom Lamb - drums
Andy Lee - saxophones

The Morris Quinlan Experience (1999)

Genre: Progressive Folk

Origin US

Added: September 1st 2000
Reviewer: John "Bobo" Bollenberg

Hits: 1175
Language: english


[ Back to Reviews Index | Post Comment ]