Devotionals – Devotionals

January 01, 1970



(Alive Natural Sound)


Tyson Vogel’s finger-picking flows like beads of clear water
over pebbles in “Toil and Joy” before gently propelling the balance of this rather
subdued soundscape. The word “before” barely applies, as the first four pieces
are so similar to the ones fore and aft, one has to check track numbers to
distinguish one from another. Momentum picks up with the deft “Chest Like
Expansive Wings” before there’s a howl of agony (spoiler alert) in “Your Confused Beauty Upon My Cheek (Your Inhale
Among My Unwashed Hair).” Then Vogel near-mumbles the intro to “Swell to the
Invitations of the Sky,” a piece of muted beauty that morphs into a Progressive
collage with nearly the elan to follow King Crimson circa Starless and Bible Black.  Which
goes to some evocative solo piano, trickling into the wake-up call of “Heart:
The Inevitable Music Box.”


While one hopes these hands will never again type these
words, here they are: “Dear readers: Pity
the hapless journalist attempting to encapsulate (while doing justice) to Tyson


A reviewer with a promotional bent might begin the first
paragraph with “Tyson Vogel of Two Gallants” has emerged from behind the drum kit
to share an album of (mostly) wordless poetry.” Or “Tyson Vogel has created an
intermittently intense, occasionally over-medicated soundtrack for a film that
doesn’t exist.” Of course, we get it that the film is Vogel’s life and/or
observations. And we sort of get it that something(s) bad have happened, which
would account for the howl of agony and the occasional Bill Bruford – if not
Robert Fripp – ferocity. Vogel weaves in enough interesting dynamics and effects
to steal some buzz from The Album Leaf’s latest. Indeed, the best of this could
stand with Grand Lake’s stunning debut.


Who can blame anyone for being depressed in 2010? When this
much of interest and beauty is salvaged from the emotional wreckage, no one in
this quarter’s raising their hand.  


The Inevitable Music Box,”  “Your
Confused Beauty Upon My Cheek (Your Inhale Among My Unwashed Hair),” “Swell to
the Invitations of the Sky” MARY LEARY

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