Smoke & Mirrors
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Smoke & Mirrors

| INDIE

| INDIE
Band EDM New Age

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"White Roses Painted Red"

Weighing in at 75-plus minutes, "White Roses Painted Red" is synth-duo Michael Ely and Spider Taylor's well-thought musical adaptation of Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland," demonstrated through a full spectrum of emotive bytes, classical tinkering and expressionist rock. The quality is a cut or two above B-movie soundtrack, waxed and buffed just enough to maintain its friendliness. Taking things from the top, the understated Mozart-march "Alice (Theme Song)" suggests pomp, privilege and hints of playfulness until our heroine drops through the looking glass ("Falling Into the Underground") accompanied by kaleidoscopic clock-ticks, 12-string and found psychedelics. "Pool of Tears" adds industrial-prog rhetoric to the mix, and so on—anything goes in this fiercely innovative study. - Skope Magazine


"Phil Derby"

Somewhere between the progressive ethnic-influenced rock of Ozric Tentacles and the lighter eastern influences of Jade Warrior comes Smoke & Mirrors, featuring Spider Taylor on guitar, bass, and sound effects, and featuring Michael Ely on synths and samples. Like the Ozrics and Jade Warrior, there is a very organic feel to this music despite the array of electronic sounds used. Picking a song at random, such as Garuda, the Wings of Vishnu, finds accomplished restrained lead guitar, soft percussion, and a light smattering of dreamy effects. Perhaps the wildest assortment of influences is found on the opening track, Brahma, the Creator. The first few minutes sound like dark ambient. This then moves surprisingly into a dramatic orchestral section, which gradually segues to world-tinged beats and gonging bells. The track immediately serves notice that this disc is going to explore a variety of musical styles. Taylor and Ely move with ease from rhythmic pop-length tunes like Blue Sapphire to longer contemplative passages like Peacocks and Swans. They do a spectacular job of creating a good flow from beginning to end, mixing fast, slow and mid-tempo pieces just right. Disc one closes out with the short, delicate Lotus Blossom, once again featuring Taylor moving softly, deftly across his fret board as Ely adds just the right electronics for atmosphere. Disc two provides more of the same, great musicianship and great variety. I particularly like Parvati, the Powerful with its cool meandering bass line and softly beating tribal percussion, making a great mood piece. So go figure, a guy like me with very narrow tastes in electronic music stretches his horizons a bit. Give Deities a try. - Electroambient Space


Discography

The Perfume of Creosote: Desert Exotica Part 1
Deities
White Roses Painted Red

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