Reviewed By: Malcolm Carter
Sitting listening to this album as a storm rages around me is probably not the best way to appreciate a collection of songs that perfectly evoke sunnier times.‘Into the Sun’ has, against the odds, however, brought more than a little summer sunshine into my day.
Canadian David Myles’ warm vocals are the perfect vehicle for the twelve original songs on ‘Into the Sun’, but the Paul Simon and Jack Johnson inflections sometimes cloud the fact that Myles is actually quite a versatile singer. Having won not just one but two music awards this year, the Nova Scotia Male Artist Recording Of The Year and Folk Recording Of The Year for his ‘Live At The Carleton’ album, and with ‘Into the Sun’ gaining good reviews Myles has every right to feel pretty pleased with the way his career is going right now.
Myles’ latest album opens with ‘Run’, an a cappella track which instantly brings Paul Simon’s work to mind, especially the ‘Graceland’ album. The sounds of Africa and Brazil are all over the twelve songs on ‘Into the Sun’. and it’s all performed so perfectly the album is a pleasure to listen to and really gets under your skin.
‘Simple Pleasures’, which is the second song on the album, has, like all the songs on ‘Into the Sun’ a catchy, summery melody but the stuttering which is a feature on this particular track wears thin after a few plays. Take that small annoyance way and you’re left with a song which is immaculately played and produced and capable of bringing a little warmth and sunshine into the most dreary of days. Believe me, I know. As a bonus track there is a version of ‘Simple Pleasures’ tagged onto the end of the album which is produced by Canadian hip hop star Classified, and, while it’s a nice diversion and shows David’s interest in fusing different styles of music, the stuttering is still part of that mix which is a disappointment.
‘I’ll Never Know’ will bring Bobby McFerrin to mind and not just in the whistling but in the whole feel of the song. It’s a laid-back, feel-good song and a perfect example of just how good Myles is at creating these uplifting, sunny sounds.
‘The Sea’ and ‘The Bottom’ are both instrumentals highlighting Myles excellent skills on the trumpet, the former at an all too short 90 seconds leaves you begging for the David Myles instrumental album while the latter is more experimental. ‘Long Dark Night’ is without a doubt the best vocal performance from Myles on this album. There’s something inviting about his vocal style, and when he combines it with a melody as captivating as this it leaves you in no doubt that those awards went to the right person.
There’s enough variety shown on ‘Into the Sun’ for the album to appeal to a wide audience. If songs such as ‘Ooh La La’ can transport you to warmer climes while howling winds are doing their best to distract you then it’s job well done Mr. Myles.