Chuck Pyle
Affected by the Moon
Steve Ekblad
October 30,2003

Chuck Pyle is a most interesting performer in several ways. He has a very honest passionate voice. He combines an alluring ability to pick his guitar in a unique style and combine it with excellent songwriting. The triple combination reveals an ease that makes difficult performance seem so natural and easy! Add a superior recording quality to the mix and you have one amazing CD release. At each listen, I find new things to enjoy in his work. There are many textures to enjoy as he works with very talented sidemen on this work. The entire project was recorded and mastered in the state he calls home, Colorado. He funded his year and one half project through a partnership called the "Zen Cowboy Woodshed" where investors speculate on the CD's success and if sales are good, they reap a profit in the end. They will not be disappointed. Folks will want to hear this new CD! Chuck is a multi-release artist with this being his 7th CD. He has also released a songbook entitled, "Keeping time with Chuck Pyle".


The CD's title track, "Affected By The Moon", opens with beautiful acoustic guitar picking followed by a strong bass line and brushed drum kit. Chuck's jazzy counterpoint picking is quickly complemented by his smooth honest voice. They are joined by violin creating a melodic complement. The song reveals the description of two lovers captured in the momentum of their love for each other. The violin solo contrasted with Chuck's jazzy plucks creates a thing of beauty.


"7 Hillside Road" has a flavor in composition and performance similar to Randy Newman's style. Perhaps the guitar and piano performance ties that all together for me. It is a great song with beautifully picked guitar while the piano layers a great accompaniment right behind it. Chuck tells the story of a man who returns home to his town. He feels the emotions of the past as he reminisces about the way things were in the past.


"Blue Train" is a toe-tapping song with a slide fretted and finger picked resonator guitar accenting Chuck's guitar. A haunting beat leaves you with the impression of the rolling train. Massed harmony voices back Chuck's voice on his chorus and verse lines.


Beautifully arranged, his "If Not Now" , bounces along with guitar, bass, and percussion with floating ascending and descending accents from pedal steel guitar. A suitor asks his lady if not now, then when….


You almost feel like you are rocking slowly in the saddle with the "Outlaw's Dream". Chuck creates a rhythmic feel with is slowly but steadily paced picking. Additional cowboy voices build a traditional feeling yet very original cowboy's lament.


"Inside Of My Face" is a haunting funky song about the psychoanalysis of one's own mind . He asks, "Anybody know any psycho feng shui?" and warns "Intruder Alert!".


In the clever tune "Why Pretend", the story of a man who can't forget his past lover is told. It is an easy to listen to and a well written song that lets Chuck do what he does best--sharing the emotions of life in a song that you can really feel and understand through his musical interpretation.


Rocking with steady beat, "Laurie Ann" relays the slight swagger of a southern belle who temps her beau to return to the south. He recalls the pace and beauty of life in the south listening to her sauntering drawl.


The beautiful ballad, "Romancing The Moment" suggests that two lovers just let go and not worry about forever. Chuck's honest and melodic voice interacts with his balancing picked guitar. Accents are offered by a violin accompaniment.


The piano, keyboard and guitar accompanied "I Love You Back" is a warm song about feeling toward another. It has a Bruce Hornsby-like arrangement. It shows the flexible style of Chuck and could easily be a top 40 hit with airplay.


Pedal steel and a cowboy feel accent "I Think I'll Go To Texas". Funky piano and a driving beat communicate the traveling mood of a trip being planned to take an enthusiastic journeyer to Texas. He is coaxing his lover to travel there with him and take a chance.


"Cowboy's Christmas Dream" and sounds just like it came from a classic Gene Autry film. It is a little tune about a young man's dream imagining himself as a cowboy.


At the end of the listed tracks is an instrumental song, "Spank" that features Chuck's finger picked guitar. It is sure to please as he spanks the strings!


Not only is this a treat to listen to--I think it is a must-have recording. Please be sure to check out Chuck's web site at chuckpyle.com. Tell him an appreciative listener sent you!

Original review is at: http://audiogrid.com/chuckpyle/