From being the front man of the gold-selling juggernaut Alter Bridge to his collaboration on three records with Slash, two albums with The Mayfield Four and a lot of guest appearances with names likes Disturbed, Halestorm, Sevendust and many others, Myles Kennedy still has the time to pursue a solo career. He presents us now The Ides Of March , the followup to the nearly 20 million stream gathering Year Of The Tiger.
As he still needs to explore the artist further in him, the lock down was an ideal situation to start on this second album. He just got him an Universal Audio interface, grabbed his guitar and started demoing songs. After four months of hard work he drove with his rhythm section , drummer Zia Uddin and bass player Tim Tournier, 3000 miles further to start recording the new album with longtime producer Michael “Elvis” Baskette. The whole recording process was like a rock ‘n roll summer camp.
I wanted to make sure the record was diverse. I’m a music geek. I’m a fan. When you’re known for playing a specific genre of music, you don’t always have the opportunity to show your affinity for other styles. That’s the beauty of making solo records. It’s your moment to step out and take chances.
The opener Get Along has a nice drive with some commanding riffs and a bold beat. This song wants just you to sing… along. The lyrics on this song were inspired by the nineties riots in LA. With A Thousand Words he touches a softer version of Alter Bridge with a nice melody in the verse. In Stride has a groovy driven guitar with a Texas blues lick rolls underneath. This song wants just to make your booty move. Lyric-wise it handles the pandemic and the panic where people just got into. Just chill out, this will pass too.
The title track is something special. A 7 minutes masterpiece with some nice musical arrangements. From an acoustic intro where Myles Kennedy is whispering to unpredictable six-string sorcery with some jazzy bluesy elements, even big band stuff came to mind. The genesis of the initial progression and melody came to him in a dream. It took him months to complete the song nevertheless. And the work was worth it. Together with Love Can Only Heal from The Year Of The Tiger this song will be forever played in his live sets.
With Love Rain Down he shows how good he handles the technique of guitar picking. This country influenced slow piece song would suit good on the opening dance of a wedding, the lyrics are so emotional touching . Tell It Like Is you gets you more a rock ‘n roll feeling. The disc continues with good songs like Moonshot and Worried Mind that have the same bluesy feeling throughout the album. The second half of the album is less surprising and full-filling than the first one, or was the first half so damned good that the other half of the songs don’t get the attention they deserve.
On this disc you can also hear that Myles Kennedy has rediscovered his love for lead guitar. Something he has missed tremendously while playing with bands who have enormous talented guitarists. Before being in these big bands he did some session work with emphasis on leads and improvisation, with this record he wanted to remind himself how much fun it is.
It’s funny. I actually never intended to be a singer!
The Ides Of March is an excellent album that contains some diamonds of songs. It’s full of emotions, touches a diverse palette of styles brought to you by one of the best songwriters in the rock world nowadays . Myles sings even brighter than ever on this one. He also shows us that he is more than the front man of Alter Bridge . Lyrically, this album draws also on the dark raw emotions he has experienced over the last few years. For Alter Bridge fans this album will not be “rock” enough, don’t let it hold you back to give it a spin. Myles, well done !!
Release Date : 14th May 2021
Label : Napalm Records
- Get Along
- A Thousand Words
- In Stride
- The Ides Of March
- Wake Me When It’s Over
- Love Rain Down
- Tell It Like It Is
- Wanderlust Begins
- Sifting Through The Fire
- Worried Mind