Florida, United States
Sometimes all a great album release needs is experience and with ‘Garden Tourist’ release by Florida-based musician and producer ‘Craigology’ we have just that. By combing this experience with the best of electronica, smooth jazz, and tropical vibes, Craigology can guide the listener to a place of serenity, where this crossover takes place without even noticing it has happened. Often it is clear when an artist is going off-piste and hitting a region that is of no concern for them to be in but with ‘Garden Tourist’ the listener only feels intrigued to hear more of how these varying styles can combine to make something great. This six-track masterpiece is something to be in awe of from the first track ‘evening whispers’.
This track begins with some beautiful cymbal brushes, soothing and slow, which fast enters into a metronome style drum beat and what sounds to be a dreamy wind instrument with the light playing of an almost bongo sound running throughout, subtle enough that it could be missed if not listened out for, so perfectly placed that without it the track wouldn’t sound right. The piano playing in this is so smooth and helps the lounge vibe stay strong.
This takes us nicely into track two ‘yellow croton’ where we have a beautiful introduction of violin playing alongside a piano almost in battle with each other. When this breaks we are passed into a Jazz track which could almost board on a reggae feel, I can see myself listening to this when I go and see family in Jamaica. The use of breaks in the track for this builds a great level of anticipation and interest, keeping my attention long enough to see in track three ‘Blue river’.
This one seems to start off with electronica being the stronger force and some gorgeous distorted guitar riffs. The what comes to be familiar metronome style beat is upheld keeping the listener on track with the fact this is an entire album, connecting each track neatly. The guitar carries this track with a gorgeous smoothness of the solo segments are extremely enjoyable to be able to chill with.
This electronica is continued into the next track ‘Fantasies from an Orchid’ where the atmosphere is lifted slightly and things become a little more upbeat lounge style. This track introduces us to all the varying elements of the artists' talent and with each segment a new instrument introduction is made and the entire track subtly changed to meet this. This uplift is maintained in the penultimate track ‘Guava jelly jam’.
This one is keyboard and guitar-heavy, but rather than the battle of the previous piece they work in unison to create a gorgeous soundscape, both having their own sections to show their importance but working together to build an amazing sound. Those bongo-like drums are back to provide a Latin feel which would have anyone moving around.
Then we move into the final track, again the electronica starts out strong, but this fast moves into a mix of all the styles present throughout the album are here at once. You would think this would result in an overpowering track that was hard to keep up with, but this is to the contrary, the Latin, Caribbean, jazz, and electronica influences work so well together with this one it gives you the feel for what you’ve just heard and leaves you wanting more.
This was such an interesting piece to write about and discover, it opened me up to a whole new area of music I never know I would love.