Myles Kennedy’s 'The Ides Of March' - An Introspective Look At Impacting Music From Within
By: Brandon Scott Hanks
Myles Kennedy is no stranger to the world of music but many are strangers when it comes to his solo music. Most of the world know Kennedy from his days (currently) fronting the internationally successful band Alter Bridge, however many may be surprised that he keeps busy with two side projects as well, touring and recording with the dizzying Slash, the Guns N Roses legend himself. You’d be remiss if you also did not learn of Kennedy’s solo work. The first record Myles unleashed by himself was the widely regarded Year Of The Tiger, released in 2018. With a reception by fans of old and new alike, Kennedy was able to stand well on his own aside from the ensemble cast of the aforementioned bands he is a part of.
While giving this record a full, front to back five times or so, I had come to this one conclusion; Myles Kennedy is one of the most prolific artists of our time. What this man is able to do when he steps away from what most view as his “comfort zone” in Alter Bridge or Slash, is hands down incredible. Making music is this mans “comfort zone” and it’s on full display. Kennedy can be heard making more progression in his career as a singer/songwriter as if he hadn’t already fascinated us all already, what he is doing now is opening his musical pallet and expanding it even farther with his sophomore record.
In an effort to persuade you more so than you already need to be, this album is full of so many feelings. Which is what music should be anyway. Music is a safe place for the listener to come and FEEL things. With The Ides Of March you will feel more than you’ve ever bargained for! Appreciate that we are witnessing true blues, Americana rock music that’s soaked in passion and soul searching lyrics that can only be penned by Myles Kennedy. So let’s take a dive into this record together, allow yourself to get lost in the music. Below are selected Standout Tracks that were carefully listened to and exhumed with an eager ear.
Get Along: This track has Myles Kennedy painted all over it with the complex opening riffs that feel powerful, leading into the daunting storytelling that only Kennedy can deliver. The opener to The Ides Of March,reminds us all of “the war that is raging between the hearts of men” and tells us to “leave this shit behind” letting the music do all the talking. We are presented with a tasty solo as well as words of wisdom from Myles that the people of this world should heed. This one is absurdly energetic and Myles has some help from longtime friend and manager Tim Tournier on this one, so you can be sure this will make those hair stand up.
In Stride: Buckle up and prepare for a sensational trip with this one. It’s off to the races from the jump with that bluesy steel guitar. Just “Take It All In Stride” folks, this track will leave you gritting your teeth, biting that bottom lip and stomping your foot for sure!
The Ides Of March: This song is exactly what you would expect from Myles Kennedy. Storytelling like only he can do. Beware, the Ides Of March may cause you to feel things such as; panic, joy, enthusiasm, peaceful, and may develop a chronic arthritic feeling in your air guitar hand due to excessive air-play. This song has you from beginning to end with its haunting tone and texture, Kennedy layers this one perfectly while laying it thick with a solo that “won’t break your heart” or leave you feeling lost. Instead you will “remember what we are”. We are one united by music.
Love Rain Down: It wouldn’t be a Myles Kennedy record without there being “that one ballad”, Love Rain Down is hands down THAT TRACK for you. From beautiful guitar work and an essence that is provided by the collective efforts of Kennedy, producer and overall music wizard Michael ‘Elvis’ Baskette and the rest of the Kennedy camp to the powerful tone, this one will establish itself as a standout in Kennedy’s career catalogue.
Tell It Like It Is: This is one of the most fun tracks, not just on the record, but in current music circulation right now. Kennedy’s way of infusing his signature sound and style into a song that feels like the definition of “Americana” is what you’ll get with this one. It’s how you carry an album across the threshold of the numerical shuffle that can change tone with the snap of a finger. This is a truly fun and addictive song that’s sure to be on repeat for listeners alike.
Sifting Through The Fire: If you’re looking for a song on this record that you can play over and over on a road trip or any type of adventure or exploration in the woods, this is the one for you. Sifting Through The Fire is a very eclectic and melodic track that is sure to please and fill your wondering soul with curiosity and joy.
There you have it! Those are our standout tracks for the highly anticipated, sophomore release from Myles Kennedy, The Ides Of March from Napalm Records and it’s releasing May 14th. This record will become one of the most influential and prolific works of music’s finest. There are twists and turns, little gems sprinkled throughout with guest appearances from Govt Mule to Disturbed and Sevendust. This was most definitely one I enjoyed reviewing and will be in rotation for me for some time to come.
Think of this record in duality. Serving a dual role of a warning and a celebration of power of the human spirit. One thing is for sure, you can expect no less from Myles Kennedy when it comes to songwriting and storytelling. The timbre of Kennedy’s voice resonates with you in a way that, in this point in time, is poignant and much needed. Be sure to go to Myles Kennedy’s website and check out all the great Merch, tour dates (yeah that’s happening again!) and fun he has coming up soon.
The tracklisting for The Ides Of March is:
1) Get Along 2) A Thousand Words 3) In Stride 4) The Ides of March 5) Wake Me When It’s Over 6) Love Rain Down
7) Tell It Like It Is 8) Moonshot 9) Wanderlust Begins 10) Sifting Through The Fire 11) Worried Mind
The Ides Of March will be available in the following formats: - Digital Album - 1 CD Jewel Case - 1 CD Digipack (Napalm mailorder, limited to 500 worldwide) - 2 LP Gatefold Black Vinyl - 2 LP Gatefold Gray Vinyl (RoW only) - Limited Deluxe Box: Glow In The Dark Vinyl + Cover Artprint + 7” Glow In The Dark "A Thousand Words” Vinyl Demo Single + Pendant + Slipmat (Napalm mailorder, limited to 700 worldwide)
Photo Credit: Chuck Brueckmann