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Rosalie Cunningham

Two Piece Puzzle

Review by Gary Hill

This new album is perhaps not precisely a one-person creation, it's not far from it, though. Rosalie Cunningham (previously of the band Purson) does everything here from vocals to just about every instrument. She just brings a few guests on board here and there, seemingly to bring their own unique flair to the tracks on which they appear. The music here has a cool blend of 70s hard rock, psychedelia and prog. It's unique and very strong. In fact, I'd say that this guitar-heavy release is likely to make my list of best albums of 2022.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) form in Music Street Journal: 2022  Volume 2. More information and purchase links can be found at: garyhillauthor.com/Music-Street-Journal-2022.

Track by Track Review
Start With The Corners
Dramatic jamming gradually rises feeling like a proggy Deep Purple. There are definitely neo-classical elements at play. The cut works through some killer jamming as it continues. I love the funky bass break on this. The tune is a great opening instrumental.
Donovan Ellington
A hard rocking sound brings this thing into being. I'm reminded a little of Jethro Tull, but Cunningham's vocals lend a different flavor to this, more of a blues rock angle. There are some proggy touches along the road here. Mid-track the cut works out into some proggier zones. It starts via an instrumental excursion to neo-classical music. Some almost Celtic rocking zones come in from there. The cut drives outward from there to some killer prog jamming. It has both world music and some jazz in the mix.
Donny Pt. Two
This piece has a great world music vibe to it. It's bouncing and fun, but also proggy.
The War
A weird artistic excursion, trippy sounds serve as the background for the poetry recitation. It's all very echoey. This is less than a minute long.
Duet
Bouncy and fun, I'm reminded of Queen to a large degree on this thing. A big part of that is the fact that Rosco Wilson's vocals definitely make me think of Freddie Mercury.  This song is a real powerhouse, if a bit strange, tune. There is plenty of world music built into it. It's so much fun with old-time music merging with more rocking textures. This explodes out into some smoking hot guitar based prog jamming later in the tune.
Tristitia Amnesia
World music, psychedelia and more merge as this enchanting and unusual piece gets underway. Around the two-minute mark, this powers into some killer harder rocking prog with a real 70s hard rock edge. The track continues evolving, covering a lot of classy territory in the process. This is quite a dynamic and powerful piece of music.
Scared of the Dark
There are some decidedly hard rocking angles to this thing. A lot of this calls to mind the hard rock of the 1970s. Still, there are enough unusual angles, twists and turns to make it proggy. It's a killer tune.
God Is A Verb
This is an acoustic guitar based number. It's intricate and powerful with a lot of old-world sound in the mix.
Suck Push Bang Blow
Driving hard rocking prog sounds are on the menu as this killer tune gets underway. It twists toward metallic psychedelic angles. The vocals bring more of that bluesy rocking edge. This blasts out into some really powerful prog jamming later in the track, taking us in some killer directions as it does.
The Liner Notes
There is some killer jazz in the mix on this number. The track just oozes style and cool. It's a potent and proggy number that's magical and catchy. I love the section later where it seems to soar and groove. It turns out to some smoking hard rocking prog later with some great climbing energy.
Bonus tracks:
              
Number 149

The organ brings some great retro sound to this thing. The cut has a lot of 60s psychedelia and pop music in the mix. There is a jazzy torch song angle to it. It works out into more rocking zones as it continues. This is another powerhouse tune. It has a lot of glam rock built into it.

Fossil Song
I dig the mix of psychedelia, prog and world music on this cool song. It's a bouncy and energetic one with a classy vocal arrangement.
 
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