Jay Danley and Derek Wylie, two musicians from Canada, have reunited to bring their love for progressive music forward and into the world.
Having played together many years ago, the two have collaborated on a new project that celebrates their love for classic progressive rock in the styles of early Genesis, Pink Floyd and King Crimson while bringing fresh new ideas into the mix.
Their first release, ‘Connections’, is thematically joined by the idea that human beings have a strong need to connect and communicate. This was powerfully demonstrated during the pandemic as people dealing with isolation took to the internet and other forms of communication to reach out to others.
The striking album cover of a radio transmitter covered in ice gives that classic 70’s prog vibe and this is continued by the elegant music that is contained within this sophisticated release. Consisting of six tracks of what could be called space/prog/psychedelia with some fluent jazz touches, ‘Connections’ is a varied and mature album of thoughtful and contemplative music that connects with you on a cerebral level. The voice overs, full of conjecture about whether we are alone in the universe and other quandaries, add a definite Pink Floyd edge to the album but it is the dextrous musicianship of Messrs Danley and Wylie that shines on all the tracks.
Whether it is the smooth and languid keyboards/synthesisers of the refined opener Alone, interspersed with some fine guitar playing or intricate, intelligent composition of Change, this deliberately introspective album will get you thinking. Connected dances lightly on your synapses with some fluid piano and guitar exchanges, The In Between has a more spaced out, sci-fi feel as it talks about the building blocks of the universe and Listen is a full on jazz/prog piece with some rather impressive guitar playing as a foundation. Everything comes to a close with the polished, stylish Surfacing, a reflective, soul searching way to end the album.
Inspired by the likes of Floyd and Crimson it may be but ‘Connections’ easily finds its own way in the current musical status quo, Danley / Wylie have created something of substance here and I’m really looking forward to where they go next.
Released March 16th, 2023.
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