Label: Black Sea Music / OMN Label Services
Release Date: 24.06.2022
You might wonder where you´ve heard the name Franky Perez in the past, and it´s not even been long ago that he was back on stage with Finnish cello rockers Apocalyptica for their US tour – and that´s also where you might know him from.
But now he´s back focusing on his actual career, going solo – releasing his already fifth solo album this month. Many oft he tracks have their origin from during his road trip through the US, just he, himself and his motorcycle, and of course his creativity riding along. Being someone always in for a good cause, on this road trip he played for people employed in medical facilities and their patients, with an honest smile and an open heart – just as this album sounds like. It´s honest, full of melody, feelings and has this certain rough touch to his voice that makes it remarkable.
Having chosen “When I think Of You” as the opening track, Franky has done everything right – it´s a song that catches your attention (and the refrain remains in your head) and makes sure you are keen to keep listening. The mix of thoughtfulness, and the power in his voice, already shows the listener what to expect.
What follows is the album´s title track “The Great Divide” – and this track most likely is one of the most melancholic and heart-touching song of the album, as it manages to speak to the heart in an indescribable way.
“What Gives You The Right”– if this song doesn´t give you chills and doesn´t feel like going straight to the heart, you gotta get a fix. Only downside of this well-done song ist he drum-line, it doesn´t feel like the drums go along with the melody and thus it doesn´t feel as coherent as one would expect. Same goes a bit for “20-20 Vision” as well, the drum sound doesn´t feel fitting at times and the transitions oft he different parts oft he songs also could feel a bit smoother. The song clearly would have more potential to show!
Whilst “Anywhere But Here” cannot bring any special flavor tot he already very strong album besides being terribly catchy, “Shadow Boxer” with its (too) long intro part brings along this craving you can hear in the lyrics and Franky´s voice just makes it a song to sink in, close the eyes and feel the lyrics and the music.
Having talked about the thoughtful and partially melancholic side oft he album, don´t worry, there is good mood to come! Already the title of “90´s Love Song” tells it all, it´s a song to enjoy with a glass of a good drink, it makes you swing along and definitely qualifies for the use oft he „repeat“-button even though I am not a fan of songs that fade out volume-wise.
“Samurai” and “Illumination” feel more bluesy and have a really positive vibe within, and I can imagine those to be great songs for a live setting, too – I simply couldn´t sit back and just listen, you just move along.
As a bit of a contrast, “California 1976″ comes along with mostly only acoustic guitars and a pure and very honest sound. The lyrics gift the mind with pictures, the melody gives it a nice underlying atmosphere. If you ever happen to be in a bad mood, this ist he track to listen to!
The last track of this album, and my very personal „forever on repeat“-track is “Leaning Into The World”. It makes you want more, rather than wanting to put away the album into your shelf. Once again you can hear the honesty of Franky Perez´s music in his lyrics and voice, which makes in return makes you feel the good mood within this song.
Overall, this album offers a lovely mix of thoughtful and melancholic pieces, but also just enough of songs for getting yourself into a good and light mood.