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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'Future Shock'
Artist - Michael Whalen

For those unaware, Michael Whalen is a two-time Emmy® Award winning composer who has worked in advertising, television, film and video games for over 30 years.

Michael is also an internationally renown recording artist with 35 solo and soundtrack recordings to his credit. He has also produced and executive produced over 100 recordings for other artists.

As well as his music work, currently, Michael is the General Manager and the Head of A&R for myndstream, an independent label based in Los Angeles (part of The Cutting Edge Group).

A lifelong devotee of jazz fusion, world music and progressive rock, Michael’s early exposure to the music of Emerson, Lake and Palmer, Return to Forever and Keith Jarrett has been hugely formative and influential to him.

His brand new album is entitled Future Shock (via Spout/MWM) and is a bringing together of all of these early experiences along with Michael’s renown gift for melody.

Rather than being a showcase of “show-off” playing, this project, which, amongst others also includes longtime Toto drummer Simon Phillips, is compositionally based with one of the best back-up bands on the planet.

1. 'Future Shock' (5:58)
2. 'Hop, Skip and Jump' (4:38)
3. 'La Hermosa Noche' (5:41)
4. 'Lights of Home' (5:11)
5. 'Memories of You' (5:01)
6. 'Poly Jam' (4:59)
7. 'Miracle Mile' (5:16)
8. 'Morning On the Cape' (3:49)
9. 'Wanderlust' (5:35)
10. 'Your Eyes, Your Touch, Your Kiss' (5:47)

Opening on the euphorically '80s pop bounce of the title track 'Future Shock,' Whalen backs that up with the synth sonic trip 'Hop, Skip and Jump' and then we get the drum-led 'La Hermosa Noche,' the beautiful, lazy hazy, Summer's flow of 'Lights of Home' and then the effervescent 'Memories of You.'

Next up is the forthright '80s synth work of 'Poly Jam' (in which, at times, I could swear Jon Lord was going to break out a Whitesnake Hammond barb or two), and that's backed by the breezy 'Miracle Mile,' the sax-imbued earnestness of 'Morning On the Cape,' closing on the frenetically melodic 'Wanderlust' and then we get some outdoor, early evening to dusk, smooth jazz in the form of 'Your Eyes, Your Touch, Your Kiss.'

Michael Whalen: keyboards, synthesizers, electronic percussion & programming
Simon Phillips: drums & additional percussion
Bob Magnuson: saxophones, flute and shehnai
Tony Levin: electric & upright basses, Chapman stick

Michael Whalen @ Facebook