All My Angels Past
DAVID PIPER. All My Angels Past, (Trough 1310). Singer-songwriter David Piper's gentle songs turn a thoughtful, personal eye on themes of love, social justice, and honoring the past. Piper takes his time, both as a writer and a singer, letting his evocative images and stories unfold naturally, and the spacious, uncluttered arrangements deepen the reflective mood. A warm collection. --- RM 'Sing out!'Magazine Page 173 of the Winter 2003 (Vol 46 #4) issue DAVID PIPER - ALL MY ANGELS PAST - TROUGH/2002 a review by Joe Sampson, FolkWax Magazine 'A Collection of Soul-Strengthening Songs', (10/16/02) Trough Records, founded and formed by Mark Humphreys, was created to showcase and forefront the talents of an 'acoustic underground' movement in the Los Angeles area. So many talents take the Jack Kerouac-like journey to the western hills and try to become something, anything. Some make it, most don't, most don't even get heard. For these talents Trough Records was formed and if they keep putting out releases like David Piper's, All My Angels Past, they should have no trouble breaking into the major indie label circuits. After the release of Lucky Penny in 2000, Piper started to get some recognition amongst the singer/songwriters in the west. All My Angels Past may not be a platform album, but this collection of soul-strengthening tunes may turn a few heads. This records features the sounds of Pipers soft acoustic guitar and a very well trained tenor voice that explores the underlying basic themes of human emotion. Light percussion, pianos, violins, and other fingerpicked stringed instruments are ubiquitous throughout the record. The tracks are very well produced and mixed for a small label and studio, and the end product is a good mix of Folk, acoustic 'Dylan-Rock' and even a little good-old-fashion Country heard on a couple tracks. The title track, 'All My Angels Past,' explores the emotions and feelings about the after-life and what happens to good people when they pass. Lyrically Piper excels on this recording and you can hear his soul coming through the speakers. 'I miss you when the sun comes burning down, I miss you when the morning makes no sound, I'll probably miss you when fast asleep, cause I wake up dreaming you're still at my reach, All My Angels Past, All My Angels passing by....' Most of the album continues in this very emotional, heartfelt fashion, but Piper does throw in few old Rock 'n' Roll tunes that would make even Bob Seger stand up and put his hands together. Track 8, oddly, yet appropriately titled, 'Date With a Rattlesnake,' and track 11, 'Missiles, Mortars and Rockets' raise the bar for other LA-based songwriters to put a tunes together quite like these. Lyrics like 'I got a date with a rattle snake, and missiles, mortars and rockets, lions, tigers and bears, holy shit this worlds in trouble and nobody seems to care,' make these two tracks fairly memorable on the record. Not only does the pace of the album change on these tracks, but it also allows you to see Piper's vocal range. All My Angels Past is a refreshing new look on acoustic music that stays true to it's roots, but David Piper's unique and soulful view on life makes this album. I haven't heard enough of Pipers licks, but like any up and coming singer/songwriter, I hope he continues to experience and live life through different views so more recordings can be heard. Joe Sampson David Piper is a songwriter. His songs range in style from folk and bluesy rock, to ballad and country-western ('songs of high intensity and deep personal exploration, life lessons and more than a few humorous asides' Mark Humphreys). David's voice is strong with a very nice quality and clear diction. Lyrically driven with unique guitar stylings, David gives an intriguing performance of his works. He plays solo or with accompaniment (including a full band) depending on the situation, and is equally comfortable with both. David is originally from Central Ohio and presently lives in Los Angeles. The son of a college football coach, David played college football, and while sitting in a full length cast (knee injury) he learned to play the guitar. He has worked as a social worker and a public school teacher. As a performer, David started out playing American folk music in elementary schools in Ohio. He moved to Los Angeles in 1992 and started playing his original material on 'Malibu Folk', a radio show produced by the late Brian May for unsigned songwriters. There David met Mark Humphreys, the founder of TROUGH RECORDS, who offered him a spot as a recording artist on his independent label. With TROUGH, David has completed two CD's (Lucky Penny/2000 and All My Angels Past/2002) of original songs. Both 'Lucky Penny' and 'All My Angels Past' have received extensive airplay on folk radio stations in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Australia. Rich Warren of WFMT's 'Midnight Special' radio show in Chicago has featured songs from both of David's albums. At the August/2002 release concert of 'All My Angels Past' in Northridge, CA, David was accompanied by guitarist Yogi of The Wallflowers, bassist/organist/Thomas Dawson and drummer Scott Kaye of The Commodores, and violinist/vocalist Robin Jung. These musicians were the primary players on the album, along with producer Tom Buffum (whose studio, Studio Sonic Sorcery where 'All My Angels Past' was produced, is entirely solar powered.) About David Piper's music, actress Wendy Barrie-Wilson writes 'It is thoughtful like Jim Croce, spirited like Woody Guthrie...sad yet hopeful..David's songs remind me of driving through the country when I was a kid, thinking I was learning about the states, but really I was learning about myself.' Maurice Kurtz, DJ from Canberra, Australia writes, 'the songs are perceptive and liquid, conveying through soulful tenor and fluid instrumentation, an amoebae-like development of David in his music.' Pick this CD up, lay down and listen with your eyes closed and you will see why Mark Humphreys says 'All My Angels Past is simply one of the finest and most refreshingly unique CD's to come out of the Los Angeles Acoustic Underground this year.'