Wow! As a novice writer and reviewer, I found myself very intimidated in my assignment of reviewing Instant Pleasure by Seth Swirsky. I really took a long time to get to this because I feel that this release is very worthwhile. This is an easy listen, but a challenging write.
When reviewing an album, or CD rather, how many times should one listen to it? How many times is too many? Many albums tend to grow on you the more you listen to them. Seth Swirskyís Instant Pleasure took root in my musical soul from the first notes. The first time in the CD player was all it took for me to realize that Seth Swirsky speaks well in his art and that the title is apt at describing the content, as this offering is instantly pleasurable. This release is to the music connoisseur what a gourmet meal is to the hungry restaurant patron Ė- fulfilling, satisfying, and memorable.
With undeniable understanding of what makes make a composition work, Seth follows his heart and influences to bring out the music that fills his mind. Although influenced by Beatles-esque flavor, the songs are unique and fresh. It is understandable that an artist invokes sounds reminiscent of what was heard while growing up. Through the signature sounds, styles, effects, and arrangements, I could clearly hear the influence that each of The Beatles had on this collection. You can hear it in Sethís voice as well. Some songs reminded me of the solo releases of Harrison and Lennon as well as the Traveling Wilburys, particularly in Itís Still Love.
Not all of the songs created instant interest, but all were indeed interesting in their composition and delivery. The track order seemed to lend itself to continuity and took me through an ever-moving, wide range of emotional response to the music.
With the initial track, Instant Pleasure, I found myself singing along as if I already knew the song well. This song set the tone for what was to follow. Herman Cherry tells a light story of a very tiny man with its basic musical progression that is appetizingly complex without being too much so. The effects used in the song were applied in a manner that increased its appeal and variety. Its straightforwardness drew me in as well.
Afterwards, I thought that Only Me Fair May is light but not without substance. Itís Still Love shows why Seth Swirsky has been referred to as the fifth Beatle. This song is a response to The Beatlesí All You Need is Love. Roger didnít come off to me as being as influenced as the other tracks, yet was still a compelling composition with its storytelling nature. Wednesday Unraveling is a very short arrangement at only just over one minute. It seemed somewhat like a nice prelude to a larger piece, but stood well alone. Edinburgh is a poppy storytelling jaunt that is light yet solid. Bike Trip is again a light, almost acoustic, song that shares the patience of love. Itís Always the Same is a masterfully crafted song that for me shines a bit brighter than some of the other songs with its full production and sweetness which almost has an Oasis feel to it. Ordinary Man was another song that seemed more unique in its influence with its dreaminess that draws emotions closer to the surface. Finally, Butterfly on Jupiter is a wonderful closer, with more apparent emotional content that relates a disparity of feeling lost.
Reviewing this release made me think of some questions regarding Beatles comparisons, although they don't need answers. What would the Beatles sound like now? What Does Seth think of Oasis? Whatís next from Seth?
This is an Enhanced CD and contains fast and slow QuickTime video album promos, as well as a link to the seth.com website. I am grateful to have been able to learn about Seth Swirsky and his wonderful release, Instant Pleasure. I have shared his name with my friends and would encourage you, the reader, to check into his recordings. I bet you will get instant pleasure from what you hear.