REVIEW: The Mirror Reveal - "Frames of Teknicolor"

By Mike Ventarola

Chain Border

Frames of TeknicolorBand Lineup:
Words and Music: James Babbo
Vocals: Kit Messick
Additional Vocals: Babbo, Mary Murphy, Mark Steiner, Bryin Dall, Derek Rush, and Kevin Dunn

Middle Pillar continues to be a leader in dark music, managing to maintain a strong presence in the underground. Their continued ventures have brought them to the point of creating their own label, of which The Mirror Reveals is privy to.

Since previous Middle Pillar releases have been somewhat more ominous in sound, it is essential to clarify at the outset that this band is purely ethereal. For those looking for regimented dance beats or ghostly sounds, you will be well advised to look elsewhere. However, those who are connoisseur's of ethereal music that contain thought provoking lyrics and sweet vocals, then you are to sure to enjoy this tour de force production.

1939 delves into the personal introspection of creating a persona from watching an old classic film. It is a masquerade of beauty giving rise to the questions, "who shall I play in my film/someone betrayed in my film/ Fearless and brave in my film/someone to save in my film." The soft interplay of film as metaphor for one's life can provide a springboard for interpreting our own personal real life film of who we are and what our ending will be like.

Confined brings us to that pivotal point of inner comprehension that quickly exiting emotional situations does not allow us to escape the mental attachments to those we leave behind. Reflective remorse is skillfully handled especially with the repeated refrain of "I'm feeling so confined," where it is fully indicated and realized that the escape has only further embedded us into an empty space of our own creation and internal turmoil. It is like the real is encapsulated in an emotional snapshot that has a penchant to being somewhat hellish. Due to its explicit repetitive edge over our psyche, we are ultimately confined in a frame of our own emotional creation.

Moebius Stripped. We are faced with the unknowing future that is comprised of moments and people from our past. These are all too often forgotten until we look in the mirror and see the reflection of experience that brings us to this point of reverie and questioning. Sometimes all we have to get us into the next day is the hope that tomorrow will in fact arrive and hopefully be better than today.

In A Box deals with discarded memories. All significant events and artifacts of one's past are housed in a box, put away and often forgotten. Babbo lends his vocals to this track making this a song that speaks to both genders equally. It is poignant how the imagery does stir the imagination to reveal our own "inner box" where we have forgotten some along the way of our growth to adulthood.

Dreaming Of Myself is the inner penchant to find the one who will reflect the light that is contained within our own soul. It seems as if the sensitive person is often the most heartbroken because they dream the dreams the world has never seen and most likely would not fully comprehend. "In A Memory's lies the remnants of a heart," is part of the lyrical content that further extrapolates about life and the emotional chasms dug into the road of our own existence. It is a longing to find the one who will help break this saddened refrain of incompleteness.

The Undying Man is a really great tale in the tradition of the fables we used to read as children. It is part song, part recitation. A young man is seduced by a heavenly creature who calls out to him in the woods. Their loving tryst brings upon the wrath of the Gods and she is stricken dead for her misdeed. While she lay dying in his arms, his anger and dismay of losing his heavenly beauty overtakes him and the man declares to the Gods that he will join his love in death and be rejoined for eternity. The eldest of the Gods declares to the man that he will never die, so for all eternity he wanders the land awaiting the moment when he can join his love.

The Mirror RevealsFrozen In Time indicates that despite many personal transitions, sometimes that which we wait for from the past may never be attained. The accumulation of pain, sorrow and misgivings take us across the emotional sea of memory to bring back the visions of the one who has been longed for in what seems like an eternity. The inner knowing provides a heavy burden and emotional price tag that haunts us to what might have been, but like a snapshot, it is only frozen in time and never to be reclaimed again.

The Mirror Reveals is an aptly titled band due to the fact that the cogent lyrical content goes beyond the traditional pop songs of the day. Each song distinguishes another facet from the mirror that this band holds up for us to survey. Emotional fragments of our past are brought to the light and given the panoramic scope of a mental movie to emphasize those times in life that are bittersweet and should not be forgotten, no matter how painful they may seem. Some experiences are also fraught with the lacerating insight that nothing can be changed, however this too, stands to make one stronger in learning from those mistakes.

Frames of Teknicolor is cerebral as well as ethereal and maintains the premise of memory as a photograph in many guises. Lyrically, many can interpret and imbibe the full meaning through this subtle jarring of recollection in solitude. Despite the lack of any "spooky" sounds, this work is no less hellish in that it causes the astute listener to reflect upon the quiet introspection that is musically delivered. Sadly, many today tend to make a mad dash throughout their lives and not reflect upon the emotional chasms that some choices will provide. If you are the type of listener who really enjoys deep lyrics and expert ethereal sound, do not hesitate to obtain a copy of this disc before it is out of print.

Contact Information:
Post: Middle Pillar, P.O. Box 555, New York, NY 10009
Phone: (212) 378-2922
E-Mail: mirror@middlepillar.com
Web: http://www.middlepillar.com

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