New York based Elf Project is the moniker multi-instrumentalist Carl Schultz that has recently released a debut on 10T Records called Mirage. There are several musicians to help Carl fill in the gaps. Mirage contains 10 songs mostly in the 2-5 minute range with the ending track which clocks in at slightly over 10 minutes. The main influences that I hear are The Byrds, The Beatles, Rush to name a few. For the most part the album is rooted in the pop/pysch/prog genres.
The first three songs, “Lessons”, “The Roads Of Change” & “Serene” have such a hypnotic effect on me and in a perfect world would be perfect singles. Next up we have a instrumental track “Jackhammer”, which is the most progressive sounding of the album. Another memorable song is “The Go-Betweens” which is a great song to get on the open road with and fits perfect with the first three tracks.
“Witchcraft” is the second instrumental track that has a Jam band feel to it. It’s also the shortest song besides their cover of “Norwegian Wood”. It almost sounds like an interpretation that The Byrds might have came up with.
Next up is the third instrumental on the album “Carolan’s Welcome”, a rather nice short acoustic guitar folk based tune. Then we have “Shine A Light” which has a strange but welcoming deja-vu vibe to it. It’s almost as if it could be a cover of some 60’s pop/pysch band.
Ending the album is the ‘epic’ of the bunch “Whisper The Memory Of Old” and it’s rather unlike the rest of the album. Mainly because it has a symphonic/new-age feel to it. The verdict on this one is out. I honestly would have preferred their submission of the Pink Floyd classic “Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun” from the ‘Undercover’ compilation to better end the album.
Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on December 9th, 2009