Artist/ Band: Leibowitz
Title: The Beginning of the Endless Search for Oblivion
Label: STE
Year of Release: 2012
Offical Artist/ Band Link

The Review:

Josh Leibowitz’s 2nd album has a story line unlike his debut which had quite a variety of styles (each song sounding almost like another band ). “The Beginning of the Endless Search for Oblivion” has a 70's sound along the lines of a rougher edged Howard Jones (minus the gleaming production and tight drums) and moments of a scaled back Ambrosia (without the lush vocals and complex arrangements). I find the strengths are still on guitar versatility same as on his debut. It’s truly his strongest instrument as one can hear the command of that. Josh has a Howard Jones type voice, which is certainly not a bad thing. In fact you’ll hear music that sounds real close to Howard’s nice pop. I really like the keyboards in these songs, as it gives it much more richness. Nice sax solo in track 5 too. Tracks 7 & 8 have some dialogue in them which may be a detractor for some. Last track does as well. I found a couple of gems in the bunch that had a nice change of pace and excellent melodies. One was ‘The Shivers’ (track 10) that I felt stood out.

There is a mix of acoustic ballads and rocking tunes. The concept is given lots of thought as the lyrics and music are woven nicely through 17 songs. Where as I still would not personally call this progressive rock in the classic sense of the word, it does have leanings in that direction at times. More importantly it is a better rock/pop album with some genuinely pleasant compositions. A concept work it certainly is, and those are not so easy to put together. You can hear Steve Howe influence in ‘The Solo Mission’ (track 13) with the classical guitar all to itself. A bit more dialogue on the next track ‘The Other Fist’, about as opposite to track 13 as could be, but the formula for the recording is pretty much like that throughout. So be prepared not to get comfortable in any given atmosphere you hear upon first listen. Track 13 is a bit more 70's funky rock with a heavy hand. And then another opposite. Track 15 has nice church organ intro, (the Ambrosia nod) and then more Howard Jones style pop. One of the best songs on the disc. Great organ and other keys added in, with a Brian May like guitar solo thrown in.

Listening just once may not be enough for people to give this a fair shake. It is always important to give a work multiple listens if possible, in which you can then hear it in various moods and conditions (also to absorb everything). I realize how much work Leibowitz put into this, and I’d imagine his next project (which I understand is the trilogy of sorts) will be even more broad and refined. It’d be great if he could use an outside producer, and some tight backup band, and musicians that could lend some harmony vocals.. It’s my opinion that it would result in plenty more quality. But for now, I suggest to take some time and listen to the whole 57 minute CD for the best impact.

Reviewed by Lee Henderson on November 20th, 2012


01. We Must Leave The City At Once (7:33)
02. The Fist (Featuring Kev Feazey and Matt Stevens) (4:14)
03. Agenta Aquaphibius (2:13)
04. Persona Nongratitutus (3:31)
05. General Waste (3:13)
06. Authoritator (1:39)
07. Back To The Fronton (3:43)
08. A Deadly Encounter (1:28)
09. A Narrow Escape (2:58)
10. The Shivers (3:19)
11. Confidence (3:17)
12. Leaving The Island (4:35)
13. The Solo Mission (1:15)
14. The Other Fist (3:14)
15. Oblivion (2:33)
16. Groove Out At The Grove And The Daring Rescue Attempt Of Persona Nongratitutus (7:42)
17. The Funfessional (0:42)

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