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Saturday, November 03, 2007

DRAGGED

I got this CD from Rosli Mansor’s manager Eleanor more than a month ago and today is really the first day in maybe a month since I’ve time to myself to just sit down and digest this album. Eleanor requested that I do a track-by-track review, an unusual request but always willing to accommodate…

pakoo boomi

The melody has an Arabian feel and is, to my ears, highly reminiscent of Dream Theater in approach. Rosli dos not shred much on this track, focusing on the overall texture and composition of the piece. A solid opener.

hear me, river of love

This is a song that you might pick up from a Malay TV show, and has a strong Mat-Rock vibe, which is cool. I am serious, it’ll make a really top notch TV theme. Again, quite mid-tempo.

dragged

The title track will always have the pressure of being distinctive. In that respect, Rosli succeeds. The arrangement is deliberately crafted, never hurried with a slow rock ambience.

rescuing rukia

This one’s a crowd-pleaser as Rosli conjures a Santana tribute that is notable for its guitar tone and memorable tune. Backing vocals from Lily Anna are a very nice touch. Radio should be playing this round the clock.

invasion

Trying to beef up the mood a little, this track contains subtle metal undertones but retains the signature mid-tempo pace which to be honest tends to drag the whole album down a little.

deeply uncommon

It’s time for an acoustic guitar to make an appearance as unusually, a monologue in Cantonese (from Mary Lee) is laid over the jazz-inflected number. All told, a little mystifying but maybe that’s the idea. Uncommon indeed.

purple

Ah, this is a little more like it as Rosli gives us a classic 70s rock special that has the requisite country-boogie to make listeners of Gold 90FM quite happy. I really dig the guitar playing here as well.

seeking flaws

A bit lightweight and inconsequential.

quarantined qarin

A B-movie soundtrack? Y’know, one which features cyborgs and dystopian back drops? Neo-prog in parts (Flower Kings?) with its synths and shredded guitars, it’s less accessible but I admire Rosli’s ambition in delivering something more complicated.

farewell september, pizzas & sparklers

A mighty fine closer and one you might find on a 80s romantic comedy soundtrack. Like the scene when the lovers have a spat and there’s a montage of the two of them doing things apart and being wistful about the fact. Cute.

Overall, something for everyone on Dragged. Well played and well produced, Rosli and gang must be congratulated for a wonderful rock instrumental effort, which is a rarity in the Singapore music scene.

More info here.

Thanks to Rosli and Eleanor for sharing Dragged with me...
... and there's more ...

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