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Clear Blue

Paul Turner

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Album Review

In a religious age, artists have become singers and players of their beliefs. Bobo dreads shout Jah's message to the dancehalls, Christian rockers thunder their revelations to American arenas, jihadi rappers spread holy war across the internet, while Bollywood musicals shimmy around the majestic Hindu epics of yore. In the midst of this babel of faiths comes a quieter voice, offering a different path. On Clear Blue, Australian Paul Turner explores the subtleties of Buddhism without a single mention of the religion. However, reflecting its tenets of moderation and contemplation, the set is awash in shimmering atmospheres, tantalizing melodies, and intricate arrangements. If you imagine that means floating away in a psychedelic haze, the opening "City Lights" and the acoustic, instrumental title track will more than fulfill your expectations, while the limpid "Be Happy" and gorgeous "Angels Cry" instantly conjure up the heyday of the Canterbury scene. Other songs, however, like "Come with Me" and the almost Coldplay-esque "Poison," have a more modern flavor, several are infused with a rock sensibility, while the haunting "Carcassonne" and yearning "Room" are in a class all their own. The music is exquisite, given depth by Adrian Hannan's smoldering cello, the perfect backdrop for Turner's entrancing lyrics. From the otherworldly "Soul in Air" to the end of the world "Angels," the themes are varied, but most incorporate quite a Zen-like view of the world. "Love Meteorite" and its apposition "Poison" are the exceptions, or perhaps a paired lesson to the novice. In which case "Come with Me" points the correct path for romance, a very Buddhist love song. "Carcassonne" remembers past lives, while "Be Happy" and "Room" are both strong songs of faith. A truly sublime album that plays shadows against the light, it counterpoints songs of delicate beauty with rockers, and dances with the angels across infinity.

Biography

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Singer/songwriter/guitarist Paul Turner was born and raised in New Zealand. He became interested in music while traveling around Europe and the U.S. in his early twenties. After settling in Australia, he studied classical guitar and began...
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Clear Blue, Paul Turner
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