Album Review: Phil Doran – Into the Unknown

This is just a quick review as I have my kids staying so I’m having to battle them to get onto my PC… Phil Doran dropped us a copy of his new album, his debut as a solo artist. Phil is based in the north west of England, and has featured in numerous acts over the years but his focus is on classic / prog.

Into the Unknown features nine songs and I enjoyed the journey around them all. As a whole, the album reminds me of a Satriani offering. It’s not so much the guitar technique or anything, more the way that so many different styles are used and yet the whole thing comes together as a single package very obviously from one artist. It’s not overstated or overproduced either, and likewise it’s not raw nor does it have a “made in a garage” feel. It’s a Goldilocks album – just right.

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While there aren’t any “bangers” in the hard rock sense, there is some quality rocking guitar in places. Check out the second half of “Watch and Learn” for some riffing that, with a tweak on the pedal settings, wouldn’t be out of place on a Maiden LP. Conversely, the flowing scales which make up a large part of “Hit the Sky” just lift you and take you to pleasant places. If you want something more trippy and experimental then the 12+ minute “Vision” may be more up your progressive alleyway.

This is a cracking little release by an independent artist and one I thoroughly recommend. You can stream it from all the usual places, or order a CD from Phil’s website.

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Into the Unknown – is out now

Phil Doran: official | facebook | twitter | instagram | youtube

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