Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Regin Le Faye - A Review of Her Debut Album: Feel The Love

Collapse
X
Collapse
  •  

  • Regin Le Faye - A Review of Her Debut Album: Feel The Love

    Click image for larger version

Name:	Regin-Le-Faye---Feel-The-Love-CD-Cover.jpg
Views:	4
Size:	48.3 KB
ID:	73395V is for "Vivacious" and V is for "Voice" - Regin Le Faye is the first and is definitely has the second.

    I first became aware of Regin at a monthly lunch held by the Debonairs in Melbourne. The Debonairs are a large group of music industry people whose work in the music industry spans from current times back to the late 1950's. The Debonairs are a group that meets monthly and is made up of artists, support persons and folk working in allied music industries. As part of the lunch there is live entertainment and it takes a special act to really grab the attention of this group, after all most have seen and heard the very best in Australian music over many years.


    Not only did Regin Le Faye grab my attention, she did so to a crowd of over 200 discerning members. I approached her after her performance and discovered she had bought out an album - Feel The Love, released late in 2014. Unaware of this production I obtained a copy. Now I do not do many new album reviews for two reasons. Firstly they are a lot of work and take a lot of time. I can't abide those reviews that consist of two or three paragraphs - if the music is worth reviewing then review it well and fully. So I generally take the CD around with me in the car for a week, and then I put it on at home on a good quality system, turn it up loud and immerse myself the music. Then and only then do I begin to put words down, and while the process takes many hours, I tend to spread it over many days as I relisten and allow the music and the feelings the music evokes to speak to me.

    Click image for larger version

Name:	Regin-Le-Faye-Feel-The-Love_CD-Label.jpg
Views:	4
Size:	48.2 KB
ID:	73401

    It is time consuming, but enjoyable. The second reason I rarely do reviews of new music is that most of what I hear, particularly on commercial radio, leaves me cold. There are many "pretty" productions, with people who have some talent down to no talent, but usually sporting either a very pretty face and or a body that speaks volumes, but not musically - there is little real talent. Often what passes as "talent" is provided courtesy of digital technology with harmonisers, pitch adjusters, and a variety of technological wonders that could render the voice of Donald Duck into a "star".

    Not all of these artists, but many, couldn't write a decent song if their life depended on it, and most of the quality comes from the studio musicians that often back them. So I don't waste my time on reviewing any music that I don't enjoy, because time is too precious. OK, is that scathing enough? Some might say I'm just an old pessimistic bastard, but, I have been active as a musician for over 50 years, spent a lot of time in studio's and while my opinion is just one opinion, it is mine and I am happy to voice it.

    It is a delight to come across someone like Regin Le Faye , who is a vivacious woman sporting a brilliant shock of red hair and who would unquestionably considered as very beautiful. However unlike a lot of the "plastic fantastics" that the major labels keep throwing at us, this woman can sing for she has an exceptional voice. Want a bonus? She writes her material!

    Click image for larger version

Name:	regin-Le-faye_Booklet-center-plate.jpg
Views:	4
Size:	22.1 KB
ID:	73396
    The center plate of the booklet

    The album Feel The Love is an Independent release, there is no label name or identifying code. It has twelve original tracks all written by Regin and her producer, Michael Zammit. Now Michael may or may not be known to you, but he is an award winning producer (Record of the year, IMC, USA) and his work with Regin on this album and conducted at the Airwaves Studio in Altona Meadows, fully supports that award.

    A little background on the artist. Regin Le Faye started performing as a singer, dancer and actress from a young age, notably as Lead Singer for Sydney pop cover band, The Anthill Mob, who incidentally performed at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games after-party. As a solo artist she has lived and performed in cities around the world, including London and New York, working as a Songwriter and Recording Artist with Producers and Musical Directors who worked with talent such as Nicky Minaj, 50 Cent and Al Green.
    Her sound has variously been described as the "sound of love and light"; it is dramatic, passionate, sensual and honest; it is real and raw and truthful.

    As her music continues to reach people, Regin was asked to perform at the live, televised Global Radio Stream Concert at the Esplanade Hotel and, she has also been invited to participate in internationally-renowned LA-based The Pack, a group of talented and independent singers from around the world. Regin was Artist Of The Month for both Global Linkz Network USA and Jades Lava Lounge in Australia and Portugal.

    So before we have a look at the music on the album a word about one of my real bugbears of CD and vinyl album production - the accompanying booklet. The importance of the booklet cannot be overstated. Yes the music is what the artist wants us to concentrate on, it is the music which is the ultimate reason that the album is produced. However the booklet also plays an important role. We have progressed from the mono-dimensional presentation of the 1960's, and 1970's where the production of quality booklets and liner notes on slip sheets were generally poorly done. Often the reason was the cost, but this is no longer the case in this day and age where technology has reduced their costs markedly. Now we demand, or should be demanding, a bit more than just "eye candy" in the booklets, but something to really get our teeth into.

    Click image for larger version

Name:	Regin-Le-Faye---Inside-booklet-plate2.jpg
Views:	4
Size:	44.9 KB
ID:	73402

    I believe it is important that the booklet provides the "punter' with information on the artist - let us know who they are, what their journey has been, maybe where their journey is going. This is critical for new artists, and for established artists it helps provide a historical context to the current work. I'm not just talking of facts and figures, but the "story", the supplementary and complementary media to go with the music. We should know who the musicians are, be they part of a band, or indeed studio musicians. Give us some lyrics, let us follow the story of the music with the words and do, do still give us some plates of the artist.

    So this a high quality booklet. It's not massive, two double pages folded to provide 8 sides. It is a full color high gloss booklet and the quality of its presentation supports the quality of the music. What it does lack is some of Regin's story. There is no mention of the musicians, and certainly she gives due credit to her Producer Michael Zammit, who also mixed the album, and there is credit for David Briggs for the Mastering process - but that's it. Yes, there is a "thank you" where Regin thanks those who have helped her on her journey, and that piece of writing tells me, that she has a way with words, of course she does, she is a lyricist - but give us a bit more Regin, even at the expense of one of the pictures.

    Click image for larger version

Name:	Regin-Le-Faye_Dedication.jpg
Views:	4
Size:	48.7 KB
ID:	73399

    OK, I have that off my chest, and now we can tackle the music.

    Track Listing:


    1. I See The Light - 5:00
    2. Doesn't Matter - 4:35
    3. Fly Away - 4:21
    4. I Love You Baby - 4:21
    5. If I Had One More Day - 4:02
    6. Feel The Love - 3:54
    7. I See You - 4:12
    8. I Want To Know - 4:12
    9. Mamma - 5:00
    10. Sunny Days - 3:27
    11. Come Lay Beside Me - 3:47
    12. Hold Me - 3:49


    Click image for larger version

Name:	Regin-Le-Faye-Feel-The-Love-Rear-plate.jpg
Views:	4
Size:	47.5 KB
ID:	73398

    An album's opening is one of the most important tracks, as their is a principle in psychology called the "primacy and recency" effect. Putting it simply, people tend to remember the first and last things that they are listening to, or exposed to. The track starts of with a very fine and simple mid tempo repeating piano riff prior to Regin's voice coming in. The track introduces us to her very beautiful voice. It is engaging and I found myself hanging onto every word she sang. Around the mid point there is a pick up in the drama and a very fine guitar solo that helps set a very dramatic tone, ably supported by a string backing. The opening piano riff returns but this time the music is building, building in intensity and passion.

    My preference is for an uptempo opening to an album, but if it's not going to be uptempo, it needs to be dramatic - and this track is certainly dramatic. Then, it gently dissolves into just her voice and the piano, concluding with a sustained piano note and what might be a viola gently underpinning the piano note. A nice track indeed and does leave us wanting more.


    V) Is anybody there?
    Can anybody see the light I hold?
    Like the brightest star
    My love shines so far


    C) I see the light in me
    And i let it shine for all to see
    I see the light in me
    I see the light in you


    V) Hear the angel sing
    Whispering your name from up above
    As they spread there wings
    Feel there love with in

    Have you seen that light
    Have you ever seen the light you hold
    Shining from inside
    feel there love within


    C) I see the light in me
    And I let it shine for all to see
    I see the light in me
    I see the light in you

    I see the light in me
    Now see me shine now that i'm free
    I see the light in me
    I see the light in you

    I see you
    I see you
    Oh see me shine
    See me shine
    Can you see the light
    I see you

    Now I'm Free
    I can shine
    Now that you set me free I can shine


    C) I see the light in me
    And I let it shine for all to see
    I see the light in me
    I see the light in you

    I see the light in me
    Now see me shine now that i'm free
    I see the light in me
    I see the light in you

    I see the light in you and me


    I See the Light

    Track 2 is a delightfully produce piece where Michael Zammit, who has a very good ear for instrument placement and certainly voice placement, has shone through. The music is strong and dramatic but never overpowers the the voice. Moving on, I really like the drum piano bass beginning of track 3 - Fly Away. I'm looking forward to a ballad type track, but this track mutates into a dramatic plea for her "baby" to come fly with her! Then it breaks down into what feels very much like a club track, where I think it would be very popular. The horns are good, but a little lacking in punch. However the track does move back into a full on dramatic piece and I do wonder if the album wouldn't have been stronger for a more down-tempo track at this point in the CD, certainly something a little more lay-back.

    Tracks 4 and 5 both start in a way that has me on the edge of my chair waiting for the less dramatic ballad type track, yet both have really beautifully crafted openings - they are rich and relaxing, especially track 5 - Feel the Love. I really like the gentle acoustic nylon string guitar. Regin has an amazing voice, but I am starting to wonder if I am going to hear something that doesn't build into a dramatic crescendo. There are so many elements of what I am waiting to hear in this track, but there is no denying that this lady has passion and is not frightened to let it out, and how can I be critical when her voices soars, engages with the stratosphere in a spiral of vocal delights and brings us safely back to Earth.


    Feel The Love.


    Track 7 kicks of with a "kick arse" beat and the use of the backing vocals provide us the listener, with a further richness of Regin's music pallet. She has an amazing voice, and sometimes I'd like her to "belt it out" as opposed to 'singing in a more lyrical style. I believe she has a voice that sometimes teases us with its power, but is never quite let free.

    Track 10 Sunny Days does deliver on my need to hear her "belt it out". Once again it is dramatic, but I groove on this track. A great dance track with some damn fine electric guitar. This is to my ears a very strong track, and it's a shame - as I have ruminated on a number of Australian Indie releases that I have had the privilege of reviewing, that like some of those other indie tracks, it probably isn't going to get commercial radio airplay. This track would be a prime choice for me.


    Sunny Days


    Track 11, is the penultimate track and once again the composer, arranger and producer have nailed another incredibly strong opening to a track. I have to say it, at last I thought I was going to hear something that is not quite as dramatic as the other tracks, to hear a little of her gentle soul. But no!

    Look believe me, it is not a weak track, it is a good track but I need some shade in what I am listening to. Some of the song is just damn downright delectable - but it's a strange need by all involved to make this track another dramatic one, that offsets my appreciation for this track just a little for me.

    The final track is track 12 - Hold On. This is the track I have been waiting for. SUPERB! Yes it has a tad of drama in it - but it is beautifully kept in check as Regin and her exceptional voice tease us, play with us, delight us with her ability to create an atmosphere of passion and love, without any real drama. There are times when it reminded me of the approach of, all people, Dionne Warwick. The composition is so "Brill Building" in its approach, it might have been written by a modern day Tony Hatch and Jackie Trent - I just love that staccato backing vocal chorus of, "Don't Stop"! This might just be my favourite track and thank you guys for leaving it to last. Everything about this track screams class and it is another track that commercial radio are missing out on at their own peril.

    C) Who cares if they say yes or no
    Just take the chance there's nothing to lose

    Hold on don't let go
    Hold on
    Hold on to your dreams

    C) Hold on
    Hold on
    Never give up on what you believe
    Hold on
    Hold on
    Set yourself free be who you want to be
    Believe in your dreams


    V) It's time for you to make the rules
    Don't be afraid to lead the way
    Hold on don't let go
    Hold on
    Hold on to your dreams


    C) Hold on
    Hold on
    Never give up on what you believe
    Hold on
    Hold on
    Set yourself free be who you want to be
    Believe in your dreams

    La la La la la la la

    Hold on
    Hold on
    Never give up
    You know
    you know
    you know
    you know
    You know who you really want to be oh ya
    Believe in your dreams


    Remember the primacy and recency effect. This track stayed with me, and it will for you if you take the trouble to check the album. Incidentally, it IS loaded into my car's mp3 player!


    Hold On


    I say this over and over again. If I am going to review an album I will do so with 100% honesty, or not review it at all. If I think i'm going to have to "can" an Aussie production I'd rather just will not publish the review. Australian music is already at a cross-road due to influences outside its control. It doesn't need to be kicked unnecessarily any more.

    So I hope that I have set this album up as a very good album. There is no doubt that Regin Le Faye has been blessed not just with vivacious looks, but a voice that many other singers would kill for. There is much to like about this album, but it is not perfect. I may be totally one out with both the artists and her producer, but I feel the one thing the album lacks, is "shade". Certainly there is this wonderful thing called shade within tracks but with one exception, not between tracks stylistically. I am talking about musical shades, but if you want to think in terms of colour, there is a necessity for pastels, for greys and other shades in addition to strong primary colors.

    Within tracks this Michael Zammit has achieved this by the pulling back of the tempo. He also makes delightful use of strings and makes fantastic use of some very sensitive and skillful guitar playing, especially acoustically. This gentle guitar approach is then matched up against some powerful electric guitar and, it works!. The great use of Regin's backing singers assist in providing the shade, and at times we glimpse the 'shade" in Regin's voice. However the overwhelming image of the songs is that they are all dramatic. Drama is good, but it needs to have something to be a reference against, and track 12 does this but I would have like one or two more tracks to have assisted in providing this "shade".

    Click image for larger version

Name:	Regin-Le-Faye_Inside-Booklet-Plate.jpg
Views:	4
Size:	38.0 KB
ID:	73397

    There is no doubt in my mind whatsoever, that Regin Le Faye has both vocal strength and the presence to be a most excellent stage performer, whether that be taking her music to the live stage in performance, or performing in musicals. Feel The Love is a great calling card for those events, and on balance is a splendid first album. Finally I have to say it, that if we are lucky enough for her to do a second album I can only encourage her to think about introducing some variety into her composing and allow her wonderful dramatic approach to also be tempered with her obvious ability to be more gentle in her vocals as demonstrated so admirably in the song, Hold On.

    But this is a damn fine first album from a damn fine artist. Be proud and be pleased Miss Le Faye. Certainly I think we are going to hear a lot more from you.



    Remember, it is hard enough to make a living from music in Australia, so please don't steal the music. I have provided medium quality MP3 samples of the music on this album, so you can get a feel for the music - but if you like it, please buy it!

    The album tracks can be purchased from Regin's web site at - reginlefeye

    They can also be purchased in disc form from
    Basement Discs BasementDiscs for 20 dollars or from CD Baby.

    Click image for larger version

Name:	regin-Le-faye---Feel-The-Love-Cover_Vsml.jpg
Views:	4
Size:	47.3 KB
ID:	73400

    Finally, this is a very short segment of the track "I See The Light" as performed by Regin at the June lunch of the Melbourne Debonairs. The original soundtrack was damaged so the track from the CD was striped onto it. It is presented to show Regin in a performance.

      Posting comments is disabled.

    Categories

    Collapse

    article_tags

    Collapse

    Latest Articles

    Collapse

    • Carol Kaye & The Hit Men - Guitars 1965
      by Rob Greaves
      "One of the most prolific and widely heard bass guitarists, playing on an estimated 10,000 recordings in a career spanning over 50 years" (Wikipedia)
      "The thing that really made me sit up and take notice was the bass lines."
      (Paul McCartney talking of Carol Kaye's bass playing on Pet Sounds)
      "In the world of bass guitar, Carol Kaye is a legend."
      (Guitar World 2016)
      "This woman is, putting it bluntly, damn red hot and fabulous on both guitar and bass guitar."
      (This review)


      ...
      29 January 2017, 11:39 AM
    • Col Millington - Hey Babe: A Review of Col's New Album Release
      by Rob Greaves
      Love songs can be poignant, reflective, even sad, but they can also be upbeat and uptempo. Hey Babe, the 33rd album release by Col Millington, demonstrates both of these emotions and more! The 33rd Album by Col Millington is one he should be proud of.
      ...
      8 August 2015, 03:48 PM
    • Justine Jones - a post release review of her CD: "that fate"
      by Rob Greaves
      Sometimes we could believe that Australian talent might be on the wane - but really, it is there if you dig deep enough. Justine Jones is one hell of a talented lady! Released in December of 2014, "that fate" by the Justine Jones Hammond Combo blew me away!
      ...
      17 July 2015, 10:39 AM
    • Regin Le Faye - A Review of Her Debut Album: Feel The Love
      by Rob Greaves
      V is for "Vivacious" and V is for "Voice" - Regin Le Faye is the first and is definitely has the second.
      ...
      27 June 2015, 05:00 PM
    • Quarter Past Late - A review of the Release by Ross Nicholson
      by Rob Greaves
      Listening to Ross sing is at times like velvet being slowly passed across fine sandpaper or gravel spread with honey. It's like the voice of hard experience that has been tempered with a fine wine.

      Quarter Past Late is the latest solo release from well known Australian musician Ross Nicholson
      . In CD format it features 12 tracks, 10 of which are original tracks composed by Ross. Released late in 2014, Ross has drawn upon his 55 years of experiences in and around the music scene to produce a quality selection of music.
      ...
      13 June 2015, 12:55 PM
    Working...
    X