Shadows on the Wall
Shadows on the Wall is singer-songwriter Eliot Bardo's first commercial release - a powerful blend of folk, rock and pop that captivates the listener from the opening chord to the final fadeout. Each song has it's own unique style - from the harmonized splendor of "By the Riverside" to the nightmarish "Downtown" - and the jarring juxtapositions capture the wild fluctuations of life itself: hatred is followed by love, hope by despair, madness by tranquility. The subtle musical and tonal changes throughout the record evoke a sense of movement toward a final spiritual and psychological state. Here, a masterful cloud of ambiguity sets in: has the narrator achieved enlightenment, or has he simply lost his mind? Bardo's minimalist lyrics - full of aphorisms, emotional pleas, vicious rants, and even whimsical nonsense - are set to memorable melodies, creating a collection of truly timeless songs. The production style heightens this sense of timelessness by eschewing modern mixing methods in favor of a more classical approach. Finally, Bardo's incredibly emotive voice - tender one moment and furious the next - adds stunning poignancy and painful reality to the songs, leaving the listener breathless. Shadows on the Wall is an album that must be heard repeatedly for it to achieve it's full effect. Fortunately, the songs are so catchy and addictive that the experience is a joyful one.