It’s been a while since I’ve been able to feature anything by a male solo artist so seeing this email drop into my inbox was a nice surprise. Mr David Lang is based in Coatbridge in Scotland and in a former life used to manage Cave Wall Studios and Cave Wall Records. Incidentally one of the first album reviews that I ever wrote was for the now disbanded Gia Valentina who were signed to Cave Wall Records so I feel we have gone kind of full circle here.
I’m going to tackle this double A side a track at a time so I’ll begin with 360. This is your classic pop power ballad and it’s an absolute beauty. The production is so slick and smooth and that means that the song itself is just such easy listening. I think the best word to describe it is sweeping, it just flows fantastically well. The vocal from Lang is also right on the money. It’s on these kinds of songs were artists tend to try and overdo it but honestly less is often more.
There’s no needless gymnastics, everything has a purpose and is quality, understated quality. The same must also be said of the guitar work from Gary Lucas. (Jeff Buckley, Captain Beefheart) Again, there’s nothing overly flashy, the emphasis being on quality rather than quantity. There’s plenty of replay value and it’s just a great single.
Track number 2 The Way Of It is a completely different affair but it’s equally as brilliant. There’s a bucket load more tempo, it’s a lot more electronic and the vocal from Lang couldn’t be more different. The piano intro is killer, and it then proceeds to dance merrily in the background for the entirety of the piece which means its blends really well with the synthy electronic sections. Vocally it’s a million miles from 360 as Lang shows off his full range of capabilities. And just to top it off a guitar solo springs from nowhere to soar to the moon and back again to round things off.
What I’ve spent the best part of 350 words trying to say is that both of these tracks are in fact incredibly good. They’re massively different but both are of the highest quality. Bravo Mr Lang, bravo.