Thursday, 23 May 2019

New Glenn Main Album "Back 2 Basics" Reviewed

Glenn Main is a gifted musician from Norway and records under his own name and as part of the group Argh.

He has released 8 albums to date under the Glenn Main banner and his last studio album, released in 2016, was an ambitious project, in which he recorded a full album of Jean Michel Jarre cover versions, not only that but the album was approved by Jean Michel himself, something he rarely does, however, if you listen to that album you will understand why he did, as it is outstanding.

Fast forward to 2019 and Glenn returns with a brand new album called "Back 2 Basics".......

This 10 track feast of music kicks off with the track "Miami Nightride", pure Jarre electronica, a mass of sequenced synths, driving rhythm and space pads fused together, to bring us an 80s soundtrack, but done in a modern style, a wonderful opening track. "Cosmic Raindrops" has a fabulous gentle sequenced melody as an intro, before a powerful synth bass-line kicks in, then more sequenced melodies kick in, I love the main synth lead, very Jarre, a well constructed track, you can almost feel the energy Glenn has in the studio, listening to this track.

"Desert Outrun, is a more upbeat track, part "Oxygene", part "Magnetic Fields" but this track oozes class, wonderful pads and another excellent synth lead, this could very easily be a Jean Michel Jarre track, the execution of it is brilliant.

Three tracks in and oh what an album we have here.

Next we have the melody driven track "Yellow Walkman", the song has 2 main synth melodies that intertwine to great effect, another strong Bass-Line a a beautiful marimba section for the middle eight, a more melancholic track.

Track 5 is called "Flight Modus" and it packs a punch with it's rhythm and imposing Bass-line, as you would expect, Glenn has constructed excellent sequencer parts, a powerful synth melody and synth stabs create a warm music environment, excellent again!

I love the dark intro on "New Connection" and again, as with all the tracks on this album, we have superbly constructed sequenced melodies, something Glenn is a master of, this has a strong Jarre influence running through it, it is mid-paced and holds your attention throughout, Glenn uses a lot of synths on his tracks yet somehow he manages to find a place for each and everyone of them, in the mix of his songs. As I was listening to this track my thoughts were, that it would make a brilliant soundtrack piece on a science fiction film, something like Bladerunner.

On "Mother", we have an interesting rhythm section and a gorgeous melody, possibly the best on the album, we even have guitar on this track, which I wasn't expecting at all, but it fits in perfectly. It is quite minimalistic compared to the tracks before it, a wise move, as it gives the melodies a chance to shine, a wonderful track. Following that we have the title track "Back 2 Basics", this is dark and atmospheric, lots going on, great use of choir sounds that cut through the dark elements of the music.

"Neon Ghost" has another impressive bass-line and bass sequencer running alongside it, a superb "Theramin" space lead synth, very Dr Who, I like the gentle lead, it works well against the throbbing bass elements of the track. I really do like this track. The album closes with a Synthwave edit of the track "Silent Snowstorm", the immediate thing that grabbed my attention was the piano at the beginning, exellent! We also have jangling Sequencers, a melody to die for, then we have the piece de la resistance, the middle 8, which is fantastic, a beautiful piano arrangement. Reminded me of the best work of Robert Miles. Exquisite pads, upbeat, faultless, a brilliant ending to the album, the best song on the album.

Jean Michel Jarre is Glenn's music hero, and on his album, Glenn shows his creative powers. This is a total masterclass, a man at the peak of his game, he loves music and plays it with a smile on his face (check his YouTube video's) and as I said earlier in the review the energy these songs create is awesome, this man is a genius, plain and simple, step aside Jean Michel Jarre, there is a new kid on the block.


The album "Back 2 Basics" is available from Bandcamp, on CD, Vinyl and as a Digital Download via Bandcamp:

Glenn's Jean Michel Jarre covers album (which is highly recommended) is also available as a Digital Download via Bandcamp:

Find out more about Glenn and his music by visiting his Facebook page:

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