Harry Williamson

Life in the World Unseen

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Harry Williamson's solo albums are few, so each one counts. Life in the World Unseen took four years to record and 20 to write. The multi-instrumentalist drew from all of his past musical experiences with Mother Gong, the Long Hello, Anthony Phillips, etc. Some of these pieces were written and recorded in the comfort of his home in Australia, and others were developed and performed with the aforementioned artists but never recorded. Guest artists include Gilli Smyth, Didier Malherbe, Mark Robson, and Guy Evans. From such a melting pot of artists and extended time line, one would expect a somewhat incoherent album, but that's not the case. This CD presents the softer side of Williamson and that's what makes it hold together: the acoustic guitars, the flute, the delicate percussion. Comparisons to Steve Hackett's Bay of Kings and mostly Anthony Phillips' Private Parts & Pieces series give a good idea of what this project is about. The Hackett reference becomes stronger in the two-part title track (15 minutes total), a more developed composition similar in style to the guitarist's Guitar Noir album. With its dreamy jazz-pop instrumentals and pastoral acoustic guitar pieces, Life in the World Unseen surprises at first, but quickly charms. A strongly personal CD, like a photo album opened for the eyes of a visiting friend.

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