Welsh guitarist Dave Stephen releases new LP ‘Taith’

The popular guitarist and songwriter from Wales known as Dave Stephen has released his latest LP record, “Taith.” It comprises 12 original tracks for an approximate total running time of 50 minutes, and has been published on the Bricsan independent music label. Founded on principles of folk, Celtic, and rock music with elements of other genres stirred in for good measure, “Taith” is the most recent example of the rich, contemporary musical culture of Wales, showcased here by Dave Stephen.

“Taith,” which is Welsh for ‘Journey,’ is an entirely instrumental collection of guitar duets with some added percussion. Joined here with longtime collaborator Gareth Moriarty, Dave Stephen showcases his guitar chops with a rare combination of modest, natural talent blended with consistently impressive, intriguingly complex chord progressions and songwriting. As fans have come to expect from music by Stephen and Moriarty, “Taith” is dazzlingly creative and colorful.

A simple glance at song titles elicits proof of this: “Moses Knows His…,” “Three Mind Lice,” and “Shoot Me I’ll Shoot You Too” are some of the more prominent examples, though the depth of tonal and stylistic variety on the LP is the real treasure. A comparison of “Shoot Me…” and Track 2, “Deep Waters Flow” yields a sonic duality which is braided rather than at odds. This multifaceted nature of “Taith” makes it a sure thing for fans of nearly any genre, but especially for those who appreciate raw, brilliant songwriting, lush Celtic undertones, and arresting performances on guitar.

Stephen cites as main artistic inspirations for “Taith:” “Too many; from Miles Davis to Stravinsky, and from the Rolling Stones to Chet Atkins. Always with a Celtic flavour.”

Although itself being billed as a solo project, “Taith” is the third full-length release to feature Dave Stephen and Gareth Moriarty in late 2014, both of whom also play in the popular Stephen-led Welsh group, Amser. Amser’s most recent releases include October’s “Crochan” and November’s “Amserau,” both of which also come to the world from the Bricsan label.

“Taith” by Dave Stephen is available online worldwide. Guitar fans and fans of highly creative instrumental music should absolutely get in early.

-S. McCauley

Lead Press Release Writer

http://www.MondoTunes.com

Taith” by Dave Stephen –

http://www.amazon.com/Taith-Dave-Stephen/dp/B00PE0NTHM/

Website –

http://www.davestephen.com

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Amser release definitive LP ‘Amserau’

The Welsh band known as Amser have released their definitive LP record, “Amserau.” The record is composed of 10 original tracks for an approximate total listening time of 45 minutes. It has been released on the Bricsan independent record label. An album bespeaking the spirit of Wales, herself while also giving nods to such genres as folk, jazz, classical, contemporary adult and even rock music, “Amserau” by Amser is top-shelf instrumental guitar music for fans of any of the above, and much more.

 

“Amserau” by Amser (Welsh for “Times” and Time, respectively) comes on the heels of the popular band’s previous LP release, “Crochan,” which continues to turn heads in the UK, and which has been garnering appreciation worldwide in the mere four-plus weeks for which it has been available online.

 

The sheer quality of the guitar work on “Amserau” clearly evidences Amser to be one of the most masterful group of composers and performers of original guitar music recording today. Their knack for writing songs intuitively guided by the traditional Celtic sound is polished all the more brilliantly by their inclusion of outside influences. Said influences are widely varied and emerge in remarkable ways which are sometimes subtle and occasionally overt. They include the baroque, folk, blues, jazz, Latin, and classical categories of music, as well as a good many others.

 

Amser are currently a trio comprising guitar virtuosos Dave Stephen and frequent co-writer Gareth Moriarty, backed by the steady and solid percussion of Gareth Hughes. Amser founder Stephen has been playing guitar for more than four decades. He has worked as the the musical director of a theatre company, toured and run various musical line-ups, taught music, and worked as a session musician. He has composed and over a hundred published music titles.

 

“Amser plays for the joy of playing,” says Stephen.

 

“Amserau” by Amser is available online worldwide. Fans of folk, classical, and Celtic music should get in early.

 

[Additional notes provided by Dave Stephen himself regarding the material on “Amserau” are provided below]

 

-S. McCauley

Lead Press Release Writer

http://www.MondoTunes.com

 

Amserau” by Amser –

 

http://www.amazon.com/Amserau-Amser/dp/B00PAAJZYC/

 

ADDITIONAL NOTES –

 

1)Guatemala

Central American rhythms and a relaxed mood to this piece written by Dave and Gareth.

Recorded live.

2) Dance of the Stout Yeoman

Written by Dave, this semi-baroque piece speaks for itself. The dainty- footed, overweight yeoman pants his way through this delicate dance, handling the time signature changes with ease.

Recorded live.

3) Reggie Rhino

A co-operative piece by Gareth, Moriarty Dave and Gareth Hughes this tongue in cheek piece lopes along with a loose jazz/ reggae feel.

4) Slap n Dash

A tinge of the blues in this jazzy track.

 

5) Saddle Sore

This musical joke was written by Dave and celebrates the long-distance horse rider and the piles of pain at the bottom of such a journey.

6) Rage and Sorrow

This was spontaneously composed by the band based on an original theme of Dave’s, filled with rage and sorrow. The explosion and the aftermath.

7) and when I fall

This gentle Latin inspired tune was written by Dave. It has a slightly melancholy and introspective feel.

8) Derby Ram

This English folk tune gets a thorough working over in the distinctive cross-play of Dave and Gareth’s guitar playing.

9) Cawodau

This beautiful gentle and relaxed piece started as a Gareth Moriarty idea. Cawodau, Welsh for ‘showers’ evokes the billowy summer showers in the valleys of Eryri.

10) Luck of the Irish

The fantastic main tune was written by Del Puckett. Dave and Gareth gave it the Amser treatment and wrote a tail-piece.

Del contacted them to say that what they has done was perfect. Enough said!

Welsh band Amser release new LP ‘Crochan’

The Welsh band known as Amser have released their latest LP record, “Crochan.” The album is composed of 11 original tracks, mainly instrumental but also with vocals, for an approximate total listening time of 50 minutes. It has been proudly published on the Bricsan independent music label without the support of corporate music entities. Steeped in the music tradition and spirit of Wales, yet with contemporary frills and a bluesy, jazzy undertone, “Crochan” by Amser is a record unlike any other from the heart of the United Kingdom.

 

“Crochan” by Amser (which mean ‘Cauldron’ and ‘Time,’ respectively) is a record which equally holds its own as fare for the serious music aficionado, or as a pleasing backdrop for social events, studying, or virtually any circumstance in general. This versatility is at least partially due to the aforementioned jazz attributes with which Amser embellishes their mode of folk music, which at its core is the modern folk sound of Wales.

 

Amser cite as main artistic influences a great list of beloved songwriters and instrumentalists, many of them from the ranks of guitar innovators like Chet Atkins and Tommy Emmanuel, jazz greats like Miles Davis, Celtic and British folk players like the Chieftains and John Renbourne, and classical masterminds such as Steve Reich, Bohuslav Martinu and Igor Stravinsky. The Rolling Stones also make the list, which accounts for the quirky and creative nature of “Crochan”’s delightfully surprising tracks like “No Shoes Blues” and “Life’s a Riddle.”

 

The soul of Amser is guitarist Dave Stephen, a Welsh rock sculptor working largely with slate at his workshop in North Wales. He has been performing music for over 40 years and writes his own songs, often with fellow collaborator Gareth Moriarty and the occasional other. Asked to comment on Amser and their new “Crochan” record, he writes:

 

“This album (‘Crochan’) is the second by Amser. We specialise in mainly instrumental, self-penned pieces with a Celtic backdrop, although with all sorts of different influences. ‘Crochan’ also contains two songs with vocals, which is a new element.”

He closes his note with a simple mission statement.

“We play for the joy of playing.”

“Crochan” by Amser is available online worldwide.

 

-S. McCauley

Lead Press Release Writer

http://www.MondoTunes.com

 

Crochan” by Amser –

 

http://www.amazon.com/Crochan-Amser/dp/B00NFLORDM/
Website –

davestephen.com