Julian Taylor At His Very Best
We will start out by saying that this is a beautiful album from start to finish, it’s deeply personal at times and relates memories of Taylor’s childhood and, in places, his journey in his early years into music with tracks like ‘The Ridge‘ and ‘Ballad Of A Young Troubadour‘. It must have taken a great deal of emotional thought and outpouring to have created such beautifully crafted images for us to share in the experiences, that’s what great songwriters do, and Taylor is indeed a great songwriter, arranger and producer, having co produced this album with Saam Hashemi, who engineered and mastered at the iconic Woodshed recording studio.
Before we get to the album tracks, we have to make mention of the amazing musicians who have contributed to this recording, Barry Diabo, Gene Diabo, Derek Downham, Miranda Mulholland, Kevin Fox, Burke Carroll, Sheila Carabine and Amanda Walther, if you had just one of these renowned artists on your album, we think you’d be pleased, to have all of them contribute, shows the high esteem in which they hold Taylor, this album really is the perfect storm.
The title track is a wonderful way to introduce us to what lies ahead from a lyrical and musical standpoint, Taylor’s silky smooth vocals tell the tale of his early upbringing in British Columbia, the arrangement is out of this world, with understated piano coming to the fore in just the right places throughout, beautifully placed pedal steel, and exquisite fiddle lines that draw you in to the painting Taylor is creating for us. These gloriously put together arrangements can be found throughout the entire album.
For anyone who knows Taylor, they will tell you he is a man of great integrity, humility and honesty, it all comes shining through in ‘ Human Race ‘ and ‘ It’s Not Enough ‘, the latter having a particularly hooky chorus with fabulous harmony lines.
‘Ballad Of A Young Troubadour‘ is another stand out track, the story of Taylor leaving Toronto at a young age, taking to the highways with his guitar in hand, and learning life lessons all along the way as the journey shaped him, this wonderfully put together story through song is relatable to many troubadours who have travelled the lost highways in search of their destiny, it’s another beautifully crafted track.
There is no way from this point on that we are even going to try and pigeon hole Julian Taylor, he has proved on this album that he is unique, he has his own sound, can spin on a dime and completely surprise you, he has side swiped us with this release, we never saw it coming, and we think for that very reason, it is, in our opinion, one of his best releases to date, a highly recommended album, this is the magnificent artist and storyteller Julian Taylor at his very, very best.
The Sound Cafe