CD Review: Welsh Avenue “The Great Exchange”

Posted: July 18, 2017 in Music
Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Welsh AvenueAustin, Texas-based singer-songwriter Mark DiLillo was once on his way to having a degree as a biology major. That was before his college roommate showed him the ways of Ableton computer software. With the help of that software, DiLillo’s path changed. Soon, instead of helping animals in need, DiLillo was creating music on the computer.

Earlier in life, Mark DiLillo had taken music lessons that helped to instill a love for Classical music. When he started creating his own music with the help of the Ableton computer software, it was only natural that he began creating music with that Classical influence to it. Soon, however, a shift in his musical direction meant incorporating more pop-based influences. The resulting musical style created by DiLillo finds him creating a hybrid style that is part Classical and part Electronica.

Mark DiLillo’s part Classical/part Electronica music is matched up with lyrics that have a realistic feel to them as DiLillo incorporates elements from life into them. The “natural” side of life is included on songs like “Germ Theory” and “Time to Fly”. These and other tracks have been assembled to create Mark DiLillo’s debut release entitled The Great Exchange, and album released under the moniker of Welsh Avenue, the name of the street where DiLillo grew up.

The Great Exchange from Welsh Avenue begins with the aforementioned track “Germ Theory”. The track begins the unmistakable sounds of a scratchy record that helps to add to the ambiance of the music. The song itself features a sound that is part Indie Rock, part New Age because of the easy nature of the music. The light, easy pace of the song matches up well with the very infectious sound of the piano. With the piano comes a gentle quality that makes up the majority of the music. The lyrics about a man who claims to know what’s best for someone else feel very familiar as most of us know that type of person. “Germ Theory” is an easy track that helps get the listener in the mood for the rest of the release.

The second track off of The Great Exchange from Welsh Avenue is called “Blue Eyes”. The first verse to the song consists of just DiLillo and a piano as he sings about being in love. The music of the track then segues to a much fuller sound as the track takes on a more Indie Rock feel. Like the first track of “Germ Theory,” “Blue Eyes” has a gentle feel to the music but contains a slightly heavier feel to the music as DiLillo adds many levels of complexity to the music. Those musical levels create a track that features a strong pop/rock beat while still remaining rather light in nature. Of the first two tracks from the EP, “Blue Eyes” seems to be the more commercial track.

The third track off of the new EP from Welsh Avenue is the title track. Unlike the first two tracks, “The Great Exchange” finds Mark DiLillo creating a track with some real backbone to it. The track features a sound that combines New Wave elements with a few Techno elements to create a song that picks up the energy level quite a bit. The resulting track would easily have been welcome on college radio stations back in the late seventies/early eighties when New Wave was at its peak. At the same time, the track would also have been just as welcome on those same college radio stations about ten years later during the early days of Alternative Rock. “The Great Exchange” from Welsh Avenue is easily the strongest, and best, track on the EP.

Mark DiLillo brings his debut EP to a close with the track “Time to Fly”. As with the track “Germ Theory” from earlier in the release, DiLillo uses real life as a basis for the lyrics to this track about knowing when to let go and say goodbye. The heartbreaking lyrics contained within the song and the rather somber music that goes along with them add an element of sorrow to the otherwise upbeat EP.

While only four songs long, The Great Exchange EP features songs that are rather different from one song to the next. The variety in the tracks showcases the talents of a singer-songwriter Mark DiLillo. The EP also suggests that there is much more to the singer-songwriter than what is found on the release. Future releases should be just as interesting. Keep your eyes and ears open for Mark DiLillo and his musical project called Welsh Avenue.

To hear music from Mark DiLillo, check out The Great Exchange from Welsh Avenue HERE on Bandcamp.

Check out the video to the song “The Great Exchange” HERE.

 

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