This intimate and personal album was recorded, mixed and mastered by singer/songwriter Andrew McLeod. Path of Wounds is an excellent display of production that mixes and matches many different genres, sounds and styles together. It is a lyric-heavy and poetic kind of album, where the singer gives listeners insight into his personal life, struggles and different forms of coping with this frustration. Yet, this album is as much about the instruments and music, if not more, as the lyrics themselves.
This break-up album starts out with a track called “Inside Out” that gives us an excellent reflection of the composition of this album. For the entire first minute, there is a nice and eloquent piano riff that softly grows in intensity and sound. There is a great build-up and the piano is eventually joined by the other louder instruments. Surprisingly a heavy electric guitar and an entire rock ensemble join in. It is in sharp contrast with the calm piano melody that introduced the song, but that’s how this album is. A concoction of different sounds and genres, from a piano-man style to screamo rock.
The recording and mastering of this album is great, very clean and gives the right shine on each instrument and sound. There are no lyrics in the first song, or album for that matter, until after the first minute. That’s because Path of Wounds is really as much about the music and composition as it is about the lyrics. The lyrics are personal, heavy and intimate but that does not take away from the importance of the excellent music that accompanies it. This is a break-up album, but the music is the main focus.
One of the best things about the album is the introductions, bridges and outros that many songs have. “Standing on Failure” for example, has an excellent introduction with a clean, emotional and really nice voice. The tracks on this album are long, because they are filled with long bridges that highlight the musical talent in this album. Great stuff.
The beginning or first-half of Path of Wounds is louder, heavier and driven by heavy metal and screamo type of composition. Eventually, though, the album becomes more calm and changes in style. The song “Capsize” for example, is a piano ballad that has strong lyrics with a softer background accompaniment. It is one of McLeod’s biggest strengths, his voice, and it’s nice to hear calmer compositions that don’t drown out his voice.
The album has excellent production value with all sorts of background hymns, piano riffs, bass lines and accompanying instrumentals that give this album a lot of emotion and uniqueness. McLeod was capable of mixing a wide variety of genres and sounds into a comprehensive project that is intimate, emotional, but a nice varied listen.
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