|Caffery, Chris: Music Man (EP)
Posted by Duncan Glenday, SoT Staff Writer on 2005-04-08 00:44:36
Listen to Chris Caffrey's heavy and angry Faces album, and then to his mellow and elegant contributions to Trans-Siberian Orchestra's Christmas albums. It's hard to believe it's the same person. But spin Music Man, and you can easily reconcile the two faces of Caffrey. With some songs from Faces and some new material, it is the juxtaposition of songs in the short space of an EP that showcase Caffrey's talents and help bridge that chasm between the heavy and the melodic.
The most angry song on Faces was "Pisses Me Off", and it appears not once but twice on this EP. One is a 'radio edit' in which the Anglo Saxon expletives have been converted into electronic beeps and squeaks, turning it into a satirically amusing piece. The original version is still there, though, with all its four-letter expressions of frustration.
On the other hand the mellow "Music Man" and "Christmas Is" show Caffrey's real musicianship, and span the styles he's applied to his heavier stuff, the recent-era Savatage and those Christmas records. Similarly, "What Child Is This" is a wonderfully improvised version of the well known American Christmas song, which is sung to the tune that English readers will know as Henry VIII's "Greensleeves".
Chris's output has been prolific in the past year, and his very large and dedicated fanbase has been spoiled with not only a strong debut album but also the bonus CD God Damn War, and now Music Man - which collectively contributed to 2004 being one of the best years on record for great album releases.