2014 / What Are Records
Review by Michael Debbage
The warm tone of Wilcox’s voice and his equally welcoming guitar work has resulted in a plethora of albums over his 27 year recording career that began back in 1987. David has not veered much from his laid back material though every now and then he will release a project that is embellished more than his typical recording. Much like 1994’s Big Horizon, his latest recording Blaze takes a similar approach though with improved results.
Blaze includes a total of 11 songs of which 5 are solo compositions along with an additional 5 songs co written with long time cohort Ric Hordinski who is also featured on electric, acoustic and bass guitar. The album kicks off with the upbeat “Oil Talking To Ya” or the bubbly melodic “Tip Of My Tongue which appears to be the overall approach of Blaze. If these are desirable results fast forward to discover the underlying bluesy feel of “Bail My Boat” that features the funky Fender Rhodes of Dan Joseph Dorff and Wilcox’s always transparent lyrical content. That causal bluesy feel is revisited on the slower moodier track “The Sacrifice” that features Marc Raia on guitar.
For those of you seeking out the stripped down mellow madness of David Wilcox may find this album difficult to become comfortable with however your patience will be rewarded. Glide over to “Drift” were Wilcox’s gorgeous acoustic work is prominent, seamlessly merging with Carol Sharar’s violin performance and Nance Pettit’s simple harmonic vocals allowing you to flow with this absolutely pure and precise performance. Otherwise you will have to wait until the concluding song “Single Candle” which features Wilcox’s wonderful lyrical tribute to the long lasting effects of the life and death of Martin Luther King.
David Wilcox is a highly regarded musician who never sells out for commercial gain. He writes from the heart and soul bringing insightful lyrical material. Match this with his warm baritone voice and elegant guitar work and this would essential capture the ingredients of this impressive musician. Needless to say Blaze captures Wilcox in fine form adding to the long list of impressive recordings he has created over the last 27 years.
June 14, 2014