REVIEW: KIRK WINDSTEIN – “Dreams In Motion”
With the title track, ‘Dreams in Motion’ begins auspiciously enough with the kind of funereal riff that Windstein probably writes in his sleep. Harmonized lead guitars over tribal tom beat guide the track into the sparse, open chords of a succession of moody verses and choruses before the half-time of the melodic, bittersweet bridge effectively cracks things open. The bridge’s ultra-catchy and emotive vocals and Iommi-esque response riff reveal the first hints that this is something more than Crowbar-lite.
“Hollow Dying Man” crawls along on the legs of subtle strings, understated tremolo guitar, and pained vocals before deliberate, distorted guitars help it reach its crescendo. The psych shuffle of “Once Again” effectively builds on the foundation set by its predecessor. Featuring a more concise “pop” song structure, it includes some of the most passionately restrained singing in Windsteins’s discography.
“Enemy in Disguise” and “The World You Know” follow the blueprint of the previous two tracks and give off a Baroness vibe.
“Toxic” picks up the pace (albeit ever so slightly) with one of the records most succinct riffs and catchy chorus combos. A welcome change from the slow narcotic roll of the first half of the record, it’s a simple, effective tune that harkens back to the 1990s grunge’s more metallic impulses in the best possible way.
The sparse and often pretty open-chords, melodies, and occasional dissonance of the instrumental “Healing” deepens the melancholic mood of the set, and builds anticipation for more of the same in the form of “Necropolis.”
While an ill-advised cover of Jethro Tull’s “Aqualung” closes things out proper, “The Ugly Truth” would make for a more fitting epilogue. Serving as a summary of what came before, the tune doubles down on Windstein’s focus on crafting an ethereal understated record, that occasionally lulls itself to sleep.
On ‘Dreams in Motion’, the debut solo release from NOLA luminary Kirk Windstein, the elephantine riffs of Crowbar and Down are dialed back, with Windstein instead focusing his energies on constructing something more somber, textured, and sometimes psychedelic. The resulting record is a solid, atmospheric affair that slumbers more than it lumbers.