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John Wesley - Disconnect (InsideOut)

John Wesley Disconnect
27 May 2014

Though a prolific solo artist over the past couple of decades, guitarist John Wesley is likely better known for his sideperson gigs, most prominently with Porcupine Tree, but also with Fish, Sound of Contact, Sister Hazel and, um, Mike Tramp of White Lion. An argument might be made that Disconnect marries the two sides of his session personality, as the record comes with a progressive rock soul but a mainstream rock-friendly outlook. “Once a Warrior” and “Any Old Saint” adds twists and turns to their anthemic melodies, making air guitarists work for their experience. “New Life Old Sweat“” and “Gets You Everytime” rock with abandon, but still filter the hooks through an art rock sheen. “Window,” though, eschews any complexity for an eyes-closed lighterwaver that could get airplay on modern rock radio now, while “Satellite” just gets pretty. Of course, the immediate appeal beyond the tunes comes from Wesley’s grainy singing and muscular but melodic guitar work. Disconnect is the type of record that would have ruled AOR radio 20+ years ago, and that’s a compliment.


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