"Our Unwinding Time" is Michael Dyer's second CD and is in the same beguiling, lyrical style as his first CD ("Nothing Seems Like What It Seems"). The first song of his new CD (with the same title as the cover) is very interesting. It is about a relationship that is unraveling as though time itself is going backwards. As Michael sings: "As every kiss of mine unpresses your lips. As every fallen glass, now untips … My hand across your body now untravels. As our time unwinds, and our love unravels…" some of the lead guitar notes start becoming BACKWARD notes, and all the more impressive, they continue to harmonize appropriately with the other forward notes. As the song progresses, more notes become backwards and even some of the later lyrics are sung backwards: "Lips your unkissing am I. Hands your unholding sigh I. ... Eyes my into unlooking are you." All the while, the song retains its arrestingly beautiful themes, with rich vocal harmonies, exotic keyboard synthesizer chords, subtle guitar finger-picking and strong thematic bass riffs.
It is impressive that all vocals and instruments are performed solely by Michael. He starts by carefully selecting and editing multiple drum-synthesized patterns and then plays each new instrument as he listens to what he has recorded thus far. On vocals he harmonizes with himself. Michael clearly has a great talent in creating interlinking musical themes, with a mastery of both guitar and keyboard.
The second song ('Mid Moss-Covered Boulders) tells the story of a woman waiting for her lover to return from a medieval war. This song has well-defined guitar bass and lead themes that repeat throughout. The guitar leads soar and at the end sent chills down ones spine!
Many of the songs have both mystical and romantic themes intertwined. "Do You Want The You" intermingles the dual themes of seeking love and seeking enlightenment. After Michael sings: "Visions, come from above, so he starts to climb. Seeking, eternal love, so sure this time. But in finding, who's found? In searching, who's let down, in heaven?" he then sings a kind of musical round, but in this case, the words ("Do you want the you, that you want to be, to be the you, that's with me?") are sung simultaneously at two different speeds, and yet, still manage to mesh well with one another. Other songs, with intermixed mystical and romantic themes are: "The Coming Day" and "Down to the Shore Tonight".
Most songs are about seeking, finding, or losing love (e.g. "Lost Cause", "Not Much of a Dancer") and are full of emotion, but one song would be best described as simply plain "fun" to listen to, and that is "Floor Play". Michael says that it was inspired by the classic folk tune of "Shortenin' Bread". In "Floor Play" Michael sings: "Mama love floor play. Yes, she do. Mama love it more than her chicken stew. Papa love floor play. Yes, he do. Papa love it more than his bubbly brew. … Everybody love that floor play. That's how we got to be here, be here, be here, be here, be here, today! … When we're old an lyin' in our beds, we still can floor play, in our heads. If we're sick or alone instead, we can still floor play, in our heads. We all need floor play, instead of meds…" The lyrics to this song are quite delightful. Check them (and others) out at his web site by clicking on the title of any song.
Michael Dyer sounds like a mix of Peter Gabriel, Ben Lee, Rufus Wainwright, Yusuf, Guster, Snow Patrol and Robbie Robertson. His music also reminds one of Interpol, Mike Doughty, Joe Purdy, The Magnetic Fields, Barenaked Ladies, Doves, Beck, Röyksopp, and with a voice similar to Warren Zevon and to Greg Lake (of Emerson, Lake & Palmer).
Dan MacIntosh (in his review of the CD: Our Unwinding Time at www.Indie-Music.com) compares Michael Dyer to: Roger McGuinn (of the Byrds), John McLaughlin (in Mahavishnu Orchestra) and folk singer/songwriter Gordon Lightfoot. Dan MacIntosh states that "Dyer is an expert lyricist, and many of these words would read just as well in a poetry book ... Unlike lesser singer/songwriters, Dyer’s musicianship is just as integral as words and singing are to his art. ... Dyer is a fine singer ... Our Unwinding Time is the sort of CD that reveals different layers of meaning with each play. ... Dyer creates highly emotional food for thought, which requires repeated rumination. ... Dyer’s music makes you listen, meditate, and wonder."
NOTE: These songs are now available for digital downloading at the iTunes Store and at Amazon.com.
What other listeners say about Michael Dyer's songs:
"…Absolutely amazing!... Michael.... you are the most amazing of all. I love your songs. I love your lyrics even more…"
"…Michael. I just love your voice...it is almost haunting, in that it fills you up, and yet you just want more. I love the guitar…"
"…Your music is very personal and emotional which is two strong qualities to have. I also like music that makes you want to sing along and that you find yourself humming even when you are not listening to it."
"…Your depth of emotion, and reaching so deeply into the soul....being able to express what we feel, but can't express...that's what you do so well… your voice is one of mellowness, soothing, trustfulness, warmth, feeling inside the heart and body....strumming the inner soul with your words and voice...."
"…Your guitar sounds great !!!... musicianship is excellent…"