Rich with spiritual hope and faith cast reflection while fuelled by melodic warmth, Mirror Image is the latest EP from US composer/ neo-classical guitarist/songwriter Les Fradkin. It follows his well-received 2020 album The Les Fradkin News and as that offering reflects the time and situations we are living right now if with a different observational premise, similarly enveloping the senses in one thickly engaging proposal.
One of the original 25 inductees in the Television Music Producers Hall of Fame whose songs inspired the voice of Europop and use of classic instruments like the Mellotron and who’s invention majorly impacted on recording sessions and television music through the use of MIDI guitar programming, Fradkin has had a persistent and potent impact on musical history, also being an original cast member of Beatlemania, which gave rise to the massive tribute band industry. Co-produced by Fradkin and his wife and lyricist Loretta, the duo co-writing the majority of the songs within the release, Mirror Image now provides another captivating moment with the artist and his infectious enterprise.
The EP opens with Turn To The Movement, the dawning of its story “of a world caught in a matrix it doesn’t know it’s trapped in.” Immediately there is a melodic glow which wraps ears, a lure which blossoms throughout the whole release as Fradkin’s mellotron weaving unites with the earthier gait of bass. Equally there is a celestial sheen soaked in spiritual dew which is echoed in voice and words and gives a glisten to its creator’s guitar craft.
The compelling catchiness of the song is matched across its successors in their varied designs, Remote Control an ethereally bound ballad but one with darker siren like shadows to its breath. As the first, its presence is like a flight through almost intangible skies but a numinous journey with terrestrial bound gravity.
The brief poetic sounds of instrumental Critical Mass adds to that transcendent feel of songs, leading the imagination into Memories Of Love and its belief and faith in the rising up from a world divided and conquered before The Lie We Live springs its electro pop defiance and anthemic infection.
The EP closes with Living In A Black And White World, a song originally written by Fradkin and Diana Haig back in 1980 which has been extensively modified by Les and Loretta to embrace the world and its issues in 2021. Even with its eighties feel, the song is an insightful moment of the now with its original outing predicting many things that came to be and still has a certain air of warning and knowing applicable now.
It is a fine end to an increasingly compelling release which in a time when light is glimpsed at the end of a tunnel where many other darker times still lie in waiting provides a rich fillip.
Mirror Image is available @ https://lesfradkin1.bandcamp.com/album/mirror-image
Pete RingMaster 13/05/2021
Copyright RingMaster Review