Friday, March 16, 2012

Thomas Janak: The Rainbow Bridge - CD Album Review.

Last month I was interviewed by Thomas Janak on his animal and world conservation show Wild Time Radio.  I must say, Thomas Janak is a very creative person, wonderful to talk to, and a good friend to have.  I wish he was in Japan, because I would love to have him on my podcast.  However, I am pleased to say I have his most recent Album and have been enjoying it for the past week. Here is my review of the album.

Thomas Janak The Rainbow Bridge
Front Cover

Thomas Janak's Newest and 13th Electronica Album was delivered to me on March 10th. The packaging is beautiful, but the inside of the booklet has a jarring typo. "It is my believe that..." instead of "it is my belief that..."  The pinkish negative image really speaks to the type of music within.  Creative and electronic.

(TI) Technical interest: The parts of the song that were catchy, different, or interesting.
(VOC) Vocal: Enjoyable vocal style elements, or lyrics.
(REPLAY) Re-playability: How much I want to listen to the song over and over again. 

The Track list:

Thomas Janak Rainbow Bridge back cover
Back Cover
1. I am here to stay 3.42:  This track is ambient heavy with haunting vocals high on the electronic reverberation.
TI: 6 - Voc: 7 - Replay: 6

2. Don't chase the dragon 3.39: Beat driven with soft fade in fade out ambient electric strings. The vocals are the same haunting electronic reverberation.
TI: 6 - Voc: 5 - Replay: 6

3. I Understand 3.50: The simple beat and great use of harmonies, vocal discordance at just the artistically perfect moments, and heartfelt lyrics make this song one of the best tracks on the CD! 
TI: 8 - Voc: 8 - Replay: 9

4. It is time (lounge mix) 3.28: The intro and guitar of this song really caught my attention.  The chord progression kept me interested. The harmony and vocal placement are very well done!  The overall enjoyment of this song is tipped by excellent progression and great lyrics! The soft vocal AHHHs are catchy and this song got me tapping my feet and feeling great! Perfect replay value!  I will find myself thinking about this song years from now and wanting to listen to it again.
TI: 8 - Voc: 8 - Replay: 10

5. Falling apart 4.40: The bowy electronic bass-line, angelical fade synthstrings, metallic staccato and fantastic lyrics of this song make it easily my favorite of the CD.  This song is relaxing and filled with melancholic symbolism.
TI: 9 - Voc: 9 - Replay: 10   

6. Only Love 4.10: This song is poppy and relaxing.  The lyrics are interesting if not overly poetic.  There is a technical BGM value to this song that gives it a good replay value.
TI: 8 - Voc: 7 - Replay: 8

7. Butterflies 4.09: This song is super easy to listen to.  The snap and electronic chorus arpeggio are beautiful! The lyrics bordering on cliche without going over the line adding to the song and making it that much more enjoyable. My second favorite song on this CD with great Replay Value.
TI: 9 - Voc: 9 - Replay: 10

8. My turn 3.56: This song's industrial sounding beat and standard predictable lyrics make it a great song for those that like Karaoke electronic lounge music, but it doesn't catch me in technical interest enough to keep it's replay value.
TI: 7 - Voc: 5 - Replay: 6

9. I need the world to know 3.54:  This song is also poppy and more up-beat that the others on the CD.  I like the progression of this song and the lyrics aren't bad.  Not my favorite but not a bad song either.  It has replay value.
TI: 8 - Voc: 7 - Replay: 8

10. The Declaration 2.13: This song is in a language that I don't know.  It may have some artistic value but I don't understand the context of it and the CD does not give an explanation. I can't give this song a rating.

11. The longing 3.38:  This song has beat and progression that doesn't keep my interest.  The lyrics are sub-par.  At around 2:30 it gets a little interesting with a few harmonies and melody progression, but it isn't enough to perk my replay desire.
TI: 6 - Voc: 5 - Replay: 5

12. To understand a lover 5.05: This one starts out with a Richard Marx: Hazard style ambience, but progresses into a dual voice, over reverberated crooning, and sub par lyrics.  The technical progression, though interesting after the halfway point, not enough to make up for the replay value.
TI: 6 - Voc: 5 - Replay: 5

13. Butterflies (Reprise) 1.11:  This song is BGM, and impressively short.  No progression.
TI: 3 - Voc: NA - Replay: 0

14. Woman featuring Amelia Earhart 3.46: Though this song has historically artistic value, I wouldn't play it for enjoyment.  It would make a great BGM for an Amelia Earhart presentation, video, or broadcast.
TI: 5 - Voc: NA - Replay: Artistic only.

15. The Rainbow Bridge 3.42: This song starts out funky and progresses into a technically appealing song.  As the title track, I expected it to blow my socks off and the let down crashed me a bit more than I was expecting.  It is ambient electronic music without vocals.  Doesn't grab my attention.
TI: 7 - Voc: NA - Replay: 6

16. Bonus" Don't chase the dragon Club Mix 3.09:  This is the most energetic song on the CD.  Though short of super club DJ quality, it is a little interesting.  Sadly, the original is better in my own opinion.
TI: 7 - Voc: 5: - Replay: 6


This new CD by TJ isn't quite professional quality, but it is a self published masterpiece.  Four high quality songs with high replay value on one CD is more than most signed musicians can ask for, much less an independent.  If you like lounge electronica and want something with a great beat, at about $16 bucks, it is a great value! Rip your favorites into your iPod or mp3 device and you have $16 dollars of enjoyment.  If they were singles, I'd pay $2.99 each for tracks 4: It is time, 5: Falling apart, and 7: Butterflies, I'd pay $1.99 for track 3.I understand, and $.99 each for tracks 6: only Love and 8: My turn.

Listen to some of the songs yourself at:

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