Sanjay Michael: Rocking Into Midnight
(Independent / 7 July 2023)
- Stream and playlist the single "I Should Have Never Let You Go" on Spotify.
- Stream and playlist the lead single and title track "Rocking Into Midnight"
If straight ahead guitar rock with a sense of polish is your cup of tea, Sanjay Michael fits the description. The native of Singapore has been in love with rock since his childhood. He comments in a statement.
"I sought to recreate the kind of 'monster' albums that I listened to when I was younger - a large collection of hit singles that were carefully curated and arranged so that the album was a journey in itself. I worked with both the keys and the sonic textures of each song so that as you listen through, each new song is a pleasant surprise.
The use of tube amplifiers will distinguish this album from a lot of other rock offerings out there because a lot of artists want to use emulators or simulators to explore their palate. But for me the formula is set - a Les Paul through a 100w Marshall, just like the first time I heard Def Leppard's Hysteria. So with this locked in, a lot of the creativity comes from playing with different techniques, using varying dynamics, and so on... When you're committed to the sound, the foundation of the album is strong.
I know that rock is not a popular offering in the current mass music market. I would say this means it has nowhere to go but up, but only if we rockers believe in it. The wall of sound from electric guitars is an experience like nothing else, so it can offer a powerful, uplifting, experience. And of course, the chorus, which is the starting point of the lyrics for me."
City Blues is a highlight of the release, an atmospheric track with a passionate delivery.
One thing I'll mention re: production is that the vocals need to be higher in the mix. It seems to be a prevailig issue with a lot of music that's been released recently. I heard a lot of lyrics, and stylistic delivery, but I couldn't tell at all what it might have meant. And, honestly, the vocals were more interesting than the guitar work, which was fine but unremarkable.
Personnel: JOEL SEAH Drums; SANJAY MICHAEL all other instruments and vocals