After several reissues on the MALS label, multi-instrumentalist/ vocalist Rick Miller gives us a brand new studio album entitled In The Shadows. It’s his first album that contains all new material since his 2009 release, Falling Through Rainbows. In addition to Rick Miller (bass, keyboards, mellotron, guitars), the line-up for this new album is his son Kane Miller (guitars, violin), Sarah Young (flute) and Barry Haggarty (guitars).
Some of my favorites are the opening track, “A Promise Worth Making” (6:04), a melancholy song, which to me is perfect for this time of year. I’d say this is a very good way to start off the album.
Next one is “Life In The Shadows” (5:42), which has an acoustic guitar accompanied by a flute with what I believe to be a Mellotron (I hope so) in the background holding together the song. There’s some tasty lead guitar work here as well.
One of the more unique sounding tracks is “The Fall Of Uqbar” (4:42), which has a Middle-Eastern vibe, especially in the percussion. The Mellotron is more obvious, at least to my ears. The song begins rather downbeat but picks up every so often. I would love to hear more songs like this on a future album.
Another favorite is “Angel Eyes, Part 1” (3:33), which reminds me of classic Gabriel-era Genesis, especially with the acoustic guitar and some vocal harmonies. Oddly enough, Part 2 is on older album, The End Of Days (2006). I’m not sure why. Perhaps Rick will shed some light on this some day soon.
The final favorite of mine is “The Young Man And The Mirror” (5:32), which starts off with an acoustic setting combined with some flute playing that comes to the forefront every so often. I feel this ends this album just perfectly.
Now that Rick has finished reissuing his “older” progressive rock albums from the early 00s, he could concentrate on newer material, maybe with some epic tracks. One can dream. I also think if Rick assembles a live band that one of the North American progressive rock festivals will scoop him up. Until then I will enjoy his music on CD.
If you have enjoyed what Rick has released so far, then purchasing In The Shadows is a no-brainer for you, especially since it’s made available in it’s entirety on Rick’s band camp site. Also fans of Pink Floyd, Blackfield and the mellow side of progressive rock should own this album. Very recommended release of 2001 and one of my favorites.
Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on May 25th, 2011