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iTunes Review

This passionate and often stunning song-cycle is dedicated to the memory of Queens of the Stone Age/Spinnerette guitarist Alain Johannes' wife and longtime creative partner Natasha Shneider, who recorded with him in the bands What is This? and Eleven. Working entirely on his own, Johannes channels his grief over her death into a series of powerful, mystically tinged lamentations, displaying a Eastern European/Middle Eastern influence suggestive of Led Zeppelin’s acoustic moments. He utilizes an array of both familiar and exotic string instruments — including a homemade cigfiddle — to achieve shimmering, otherworldly effects that capture both deep sorrow and spiritual transcendence. “Endless Eyes,” “Make God Jealous” and “Speechless” combine agile fretwork with shimmering, ritual-like melodies. Songs like “The Bleeding Whole” and “Unfinished Plan” convey acceptance without denying suffering. From the buoyant, Beatles-like “Return to You” to the rippling, eerie “Spider,” the album is rich with sonic colors and textures.

Customer Reviews

Do yourself a favor and get this right now!

This is one of those rare records that come along every 10 years. What this man has created is truly amazing. With mostly just a cigar box guitar and his voice he takes the listener through a mesmerizing journey through the human condition. It is a spectacular display of talent in each area of recorded music without being showy or gimmicky. The songs themselves are perfect, the lyrics and the concept grow deeper with each listening. The performances in the guitar playing, singing and arrangements are graceful,powerful and spellbinding. Finally the recording and production are enchanting, enveloping and rewarding.

This record represents the highest level of what it means to be a musician in this era.

I barely like anything and I love this.

at long last

An(other) engaging work by a unique artist that ventures outside convention. Thank you for 'Spark'...

Could be longer

What an ode to a life. If you do not know this man, get to know his work. Follow the journey that will lead you to this album.
He has worked with some great musicians but none could match up better with him than his soulmate/wife Natasha.
I rate this four stars because on his website there is a beautiful song left off the album available for free download.
Kind of thought the album would be longer but I hope this is only a taste of things to come.


Born: 1962 in Chile

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Guitarist, songwriter, and producer Alain Johannes has been a mainstay on the American hard rock scene since the late '80s. Born in Chile in 1962, his first band, Anthym, later renamed What Is This? included Red Hot Chili Pepper' Flea and Hillel Slovak, and in 1987, he teamed up with future wife, Russian keyboardist Natasha Shneider on the album Walk the Moon. Three years later, the pair recruited drummer Jack Irons to form progressive rock trio Eleven, who released five studio albums over a 12-year...
Full Bio
Spark, Alain Johannes
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Customer Ratings

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