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SHADOWLIGHT

Crossover Prog • United Kingdom


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Shadowlight biography
UK act SHADOWLIGHT was formed by long time friends James Hodkinson and Mark Wilson in 2009, a creative duo with a past stretching back to the early 1990's. One year later their initial musical sketches were formalized wit the release of an initial EP, "Winter". Following this they were joined by Ed Williamson-Brown (bass) and Paul Collins (drums), and work commenced on their first full length album, "Twilight Canvas", which was self released by the band towards the end of 2012. Since then Collins has left the band, while Tony Wright (guitars, vocals) and
Carl Cole (drums, percussion) have joined.

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SHADOWLIGHT discography


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SHADOWLIGHT top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.55 | 11 ratings
Twilight Canvas
2012

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0.00 | 0 ratings
Winter
2010

SHADOWLIGHT Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Twilight Canvas by SHADOWLIGHT album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.55 | 11 ratings

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Twilight Canvas
Shadowlight Crossover Prog

Review by PH

4 stars SHADOWLIGHT have sublimated a wide range of emotions and feelings into their music to provide the overall atmosphere. There is definitely somewhat of a similarity to Porcupine Tree (a comparison amplified by Steven Wilson-style of singing and harder-edged guitar work). Some of the instrumental passages do feel like they'd have fit on 'Lightbulb Sun' album...The next British group like DeeExpus comes to my mind in pleasant, mellow parts. Shadowlight succeeds to keep attention to surprise by sudden changing climates from heavy parts to fragile piano and dreamy mood. I think that mighty Pink Floyd is the source of inspiration too. Harmony vocals add an extra, a bit psychedelic and hypnotizing dimension... Whatever influences, Shadowlight's full-length CD 'Twilight Canvas' is packed with catchy melodies shuffling along at a sedate pace. As this cleverly-constructed album evolves, you will be impressed by the stuff that guys are able to bring to the table. The guitar player James Hodkinson proves to be a burner of true talent. And when he's backed by the tasteful keyboards of Mark Wilson then the results are 10 songs of high calibre. Add to that some impactful bass work from Ed Williamson-Brown, the colourful drumming of Paul Collins and you have a line-up of musicians that sheer class on display and sophistication. The vocal performance is strong and lyrical aspect is articulate. Each track has its merit to flow through changes that keep everything organic. For me personally, standouts include: ever changing 'Beauty Dies', melancholic 'Monochrome Dream' and eloquent 'The Cutting Room' along with beautiful 'Black Swan Song'. Though Porcupine Tree is cited for spiritualism, that does not stop this new release being worthy of attention. Atmospheric or post-rock or progressive - whatever you want to call it, Shadowlight meshes expertise stuff. There's so much to celebrate here. All in all, I think the British band has lived up to the promise to deliver an excellent debut album. It's a strong release which certainly shows a great deal of promise. Do yourself a favour and check out 'Twilight Canvas'...

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 Twilight Canvas by SHADOWLIGHT album cover Studio Album, 2012
3.55 | 11 ratings

BUY
Twilight Canvas
Shadowlight Crossover Prog

Review by ScorchedFirth

3 stars (7/10)

I feel I probably should say a few words about Shadowlight, seeing as I suggested their addition here in the first place. I first found out about these guys when I went to see Riverside in London about a month ago, and was handed a leaflet about a new band called Shadowlight. The leaflet claimed them to be a mixture of Genesis and Tool, and that the genre was 'post-progressive rock'. I like "Twilight Canvas", though I'm not sure it ever reaches the symphonic mastery of Genesis or the powerfully heavy complexity of Tool, and I'm not at all sure what 'post-progressive' even means. What this album most certainly can be described as is a good slice of melodic crossover that should appeal to a good variety of prog fans (especially PT fans).

The name 'Shadowlight' seems to have been deliberately chosen to correspond to the sound, which is indeed a mixture of shadow and light. The guitar tone can get heavy a times, without ever really getting properly into metal territory, whereas the melodic approach is quite rich but still doesn't ever go into full on symphonic. It's a decent balancing act, though doesn't reach the same extremities that Riverside do.

Every single one of the songs has a good chorus. Shadowlight utilise harmonies well, working with what they have, but sometimes I find myself wishing for a little more intensity in the lead vocals. Nonetheless I can easily remember parts of all the songs, so they've all hit the mark in that respect. Despite the emphasis on melody, we do get some heavier odd time parts, in particular the 5/8 intro to "Beauty Dies" is very much stuck in my head, and I like the guitar soloing in "Dreaming Awake" and "Monochrome Dream" a lot. Parts of the latter song put me strongly in mind of Porcupine Tree, in particular the line 'move on black and white' is delivered a lot like 'swim with me into your blackest eyes'.

The keyboard sounds tend to be organs and string sections, and provides a good melodic backing for the band, and even occasionally taking the lead. It's clear that thought has been put into how to arrange all these songs, thought has been put into including interesting progressive elements, and thought has been put into the lyrics. The melancholy of "Cutting Room", or the heavier "Different Light" are good examples of this.

For me, "Twilight Canvas" turned out to be an enjoyable listen that is still growing on me, I can happily recommend it. Whilst it maybe missing a little bit of intensity compared with their influences (that makes me hold off on 4 stars), Shadowlight are still a band to watch for the future.

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