Full Circle - Myles Bigalow
Deep Culture Music
No man is an island. No one musician can create the perfect storm. Music is above all, a dialogue. Even Wolfie Mozart needed orchestras and opera companies to realize his masterful musical visions. Myles Bigalow is a Vancouver percussionist who does so much more than drum. In his own words, “I do whatever it takes to create the music I hear in my head.” Through programming sleight of hand or hands-on the skins creation, he has developed a technique that allows him to access the influences he’s absorbed in Latin folkloric, jazz, soul, hip hop and house. But, he is in no way so self-absorbed that he doesn’t recognize the potential and importance of dialogue. For his fourth album, Full Circle, Bigalow teams with pianist, Max Zipursky. The pair has been sponsored by the elite Fazioli Showcase piano maker. The company is finding success among Vancouver’s wealthy. The exclusive Fairmont Hotel is even offering visitors a Fazioli suite with one of their 225 grand, grand pianos as its centre piece. Zipurksy’s touch is magnificent as is the captured voice of the Fazioli on the new album. Other top drawer talent appearing on Full Circle include Vancity’s go to trumpeter, Miguelito Valdes and Russ Klyne on guitar. But, the musical sophistication and de rigueur are the result of Bigalow’s unrelenting vision and handiwork. The liner notes explain his artistically precarious position. He has no interest in writing to a small mutual appreciation club of music elitists. At the same time, he doesn’t want to succumb to the dumbed down sound that permeates the airwaves. Full Circle walks that line; a beautifully balanced blend of urban hip, tribal groove and instrumental excellence. In the future I would love to see Myles Bigalow collaborate with more like-minded vocalists. As previously stated, no one musician can create the perfect storm. Bigalow’s spoken word and vocal melodies are accomplished enough but lack the deep soul evoked by true singer/stylists (like the gorgeous Struggle to Success with Amalia Townsend from his previous disc, Good Life). And, unfortunately the pervasive use of the ‘Auto-tune’ effect throughout Full Circle stands in contrast to Bigalow’s desire to separate his sound from the rest of the herd. Cher has so much to answer for.