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Rejyna - 2014 - "Idio"

(62:21, Rejyna Douglass-Whitman)



1. Common Voice (Go Easy) 3:56
2. Mandolian Mirage 3:47
3. Beyond My Back Door 3:08
4. Sleeky Slinker 4:10
5. Sound Sircus Sircle: Prelude 3:43
6. Looking for You 2:59
7. Dusty Ridin’ Nugget 3:00
8. Galactic Projectories 3:47
9. Gitano En Shahnameh 6:40
10. Android Pageant 2:32
11. Quacky Waddlesworth 2:00
12. Born Here (Autochthonous) 5:18
13. Too Long Gone 5:51
14. One Single Word (Suus a Vala) 3:05
15. Jorie Green Thumb (Song for Mom) 4:07
16. Sound Sircus Sircle: Fugue 4:38


Rejyna Douglass-Whitman - vocals, all instruments

Prolusion. US artist Rejyna DOUGLASS-WHITMAN have been a part of the US music scene for around 40 years, perhaps most notably as a member of underground band Citadel. She appeared as a recording solo artist a few years back, and t my knowledge "Idio" is the second album she has released under her own name, a production that was self-released back in 2014.

Analysis. The main strengths and main weakness of this album is that it is a solitary production on all levels: One person doing all the thinking as well as all the work. Which ensures that the vision of the creator comes through unfiltered and undiluted, but also that others that may have been able to lend additional talents to the execution hasn't been given that opportunity. In terms of style we are heading into folkier waters on this one, where the guitar and the vocals are the dominant aspects. Folkier used in a liberal sense here, as this isn't at all a collection of campfire songs or the musings of a singer/songwriter. There is a foundation in what I'd describe as folk music though, but more often than not this foundation does not stand alone. The main brickwork added, allegorically speaking, are psychedelic effects. From guitar solo runs and textures that some psychedelic rock bands would have given and arm and a leg for to echoing and reverberating plucked guitar notes and floating, shimmering psychedelic textures, the latter presumably the result of drones and loops. The vocals also takes on an effects treated mode at times, and one might assume that loops of some kinds are in use for the vocal harmonies and layered vocal passages. The songs occasionally hits out into more chaotic and more purebred cosmic directions too, occasionally also leaving the folk foundation completely behind. An additional aspect to the material is that there are shades of a more purebred progressive rock simmering beneath the surface. A song structure reminding of good, old Yes here, some vocal details giving rise to associations towards Gentle Giant there, vocal details not too far removed from the likes of Jon Anderson at times, and perhaps even the slight echo of a Frippian twisted guitar subtlety here and there as well. While the album experience as such is one that for me resides inside the context of a progressive and psychedelic folk production, those who know and love their classic era progressive rock will encounter those subtle undercurrents that indicates that this is an artist rather well aware of what progressive rock used to be.

Conclusion. Rejyna's second solo album is one that comes with it's own particular strengths and weaknesses. An undiluted creative vision, where folk music is a foundation and psychedelic elements are liberally applied, in a manner that makes this a production just as much a progressive one as a strictly folk oriented one. A tad lo-fi, with what I suspect is a liberal amount of loops throughout. If that general descriptions comes across as enticing, then this is a CD that merits a check at some point.

Progmessor: May 24th, 2018
The Rating Room

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