Saturday, December 23, 2006

RAF21 - I Have A Dream

Hear The Track Here

I Have a Dream being, of course, the words that have come to describe the immortal 1963 speech of Dr Martin Luther King in which he uses these words to create a vision of the world he wished to see. It does have tremendous connotations these days for just about any human alive I guess and has become one of the foremost speeches of any age. Some big shoes to fill then, if you are ever going to use such a famous string of words that mean so much to so many people. Raphael Beaudon (aka RAF21) obviously knows better than to try and include any parts of that speech into his music because, weel that would be just too tacky eh? The one complaint that could never be leveled at RAF21 is tackiness (ie eewwwwww, yuk, and other vomiting noises) because even though he's working in one of the most tacky of genre's Electronica: Ambient, he carries it off admirably.

Although I found the production a bit tame on I Have A Dream, it is still clear as a bell with all instruments carrying their weight productively. Personally I would have liked a little more drama but hey, it's small change considering what you are getting. I Have A Dream is a most attractive blend of rock (the drums and bass backing) and classical instrumental themes, all worked together with a thorough professionalism. That isn't something I can normally feel about this much maligned (by me usually) genre. So I question whether this is in the right category, it might fare better as Fusion or definitely some form of classical. In my experience getting the genre classification right can often mean the difference between high plays/downloads or nominal (ie your Mum, your Dad, the dog...) so maybe RAF should rethink this.

On the best possible note, I Have A Dream is a rare track that will take a while to really settle in and I do advise giving it that time. Rapheal plays flute, piano and guitar and considering that the track doesn't consist of much more than that, plays them extremely well. It's a given then that he's also going to treat those instruments with care, never allowing one to overstep the other - and when you're dealing with a track of this complexity and length that's a fair old job. I can't say, with hand on heart, that I Have A Dream is the kind of track I would clasp to me puny bosom but it's certainly proficient and beautifully performed. Particularly if you like a good flautist...

Well produced and performed classical blend. Recommended.

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