May 14, 2021 Myles Kennedy – The Ides Of March (Album Review)
One of the most all around musicians in Rock, Singer/Songwriter/Guitarist Myles Kennedy is set to release his highly anticipated sophomore solo album, The Ides Of March, on Friday, May 14, 2021 via Napalm Records.
A busy guy, three years ago Kennedy took a sidebar from his usual gigs fronting Alter Bridge and Slash featuring Myles Kennedy & The Conspirators to release his debut solo album, 2018’s Year Of The Tiger. A critically acclaimed album, Year Of The Tiger was a well written, predominately acoustic Rock album about Kennedy’s true life story of losing his father at a very young age and the growing pains thereafter. Since then, Kennedy has performed on Slash’s 2018 release, Living The Dream, and the latest Alter Bridge album, 2019’s Walk the Sky. Along with touring and writing new music, Kennedy has easily had his hands full in the last three years since releasing Year Of The Tiger. However, with the world changing so dramatically in 2020, Kennedy was easily inspired to write new solo material thus making way for The Ides Of March.
Produced by long time collaborator, Producer Michael “Elvis” Baskette, The Ides Of March sees Kennedy once again joined by good friend and Drummer Zia Uddin and Bassist/Manager Tim Tournier who backed up Kennedy on Year Of The Tiger. When all was said and done, Kennedy had amassed eleven new tracks inspired by his love for Rock, Blues, and Country. That being said, The Ides Of March kicks off via the slide Rock guitar of “Get Along.” Delivering a more uptempo feel, Kennedy immediately yearns to find out why we all can’t just get along despite our differences. Bringing the last year right to the forefront, “A Thousand Words” is profound lyrically as Kennedy sings “In times like these, we must live and learn.” Next up, “In Stride” is the debut single with distorted Bluesy slide guitar asking if we can just take a step back and go with the flow.
Coming in at over seven minutes long, “The Ides Of March” is complex in musicality before the catchy, almost punk hook of “Wake Me When It’s Over” precedes the album’s first ballad, “Love Rain Down.” Putting it all out there, “Tell It Like It Is” is a dynamic Blues Rocker and then “Moonshot” is another compelling ballad. Thereafter, “Wanderlust Begins” could have easily been on Year Of The Tiger with a much simpler acoustic feel before the brighter sounds of “Sifting Through The Fire.” In a good closing ballad, Kennedy puts everything into perspective on “Worried Mind” and the band even gets into some real smokey slow Blues riffs which build emotionally to a huge climax amongst Kennedy’s powerful vocal performance.
After a quick three years, Myles Kennedy makes his triumphant return to making solo material on The Ides Of March. Giving a much more uptempo Country Blues Rock feel, The Ides Of March came about at a time, although unfortunate, when a talented songwriter like Kennedy could shine by expressing the emotions of those who cannot express themselves through song. Overall, The Ides Of March shows Kennedy’s diverse musical talents alongside strong lyrics. For these reasons, Cryptic Rock gives The Ides Of March 4 out of 5 stars.