Bill Madden – Gone / 2006 Mad Muse / 11 Tracks / http://www.billmadden.com / Reviewed 16 March 2006
“Weight of His Words” is a track that is dominated by the acoustic guitar, and Madden taking the style of Tom Petty to heart. In this track, Madden attempts to fuse two distinct styles; mid-nineties alternative rock with the aforementioned style of Tom Petty. The beauty about “Gone” is that the compositions present all are airy while still having a great deal of clutter to them.
For example, “Path of the Heart” clatters along with a full band, of which individuals can easily hear the bass, drums and acoustic at all parts of the track. “Might Have Been” uses the guitar work of an individual like Clapton and couch it in a very open atmosphere. “Friend” is the shortest track on “Gone”, and this is a tremendously sad fact that individuals have to get used to; this is one of the most catchy tracks that Madden has ever came up with. The presence of the synthesizer in this track adding a mild psychedelic sound is a welcome addition to Madden’s style. It is only a few more seconds after the end of “Friend” that Madden comes back just as strong with “Gone”. In what has to be one of the most chaotic tracks during the disc, “Gone” throws in a shrill guitar riff among an already-pounding track, allowing listeners to ride on a wave of elation until the track ends. “Dangerous Game” is a morose track that paints the absolute opposite to the uptempo of the previous few tracks on “Gone”. A nice middle ground is created during “What in the World”, a track that is largely controlled by Madden’s vocals.
This diatribe against the government is enough of an aural sneer to break from the general, slower sound of the track. It is in fact the slower style of “What in the World” that dominates the later section of the disc; even with this more cautious approach to things, there is still a driving force to Madden’s music that never fails to interest. The epic stylings of “Art of Being” are made all the better with the inclusion of yet another soulful guitar solo that does not show off quite as much an ego of the guitarist but eir skill. This is an album that will give more of itself to listeners with each subsequent listen; “Gone” is yet another step to Madden’s completion as an artist.
Top Tracks: Friend, Gone