Exposé Online banner

Tiles — Tiles
(Inside Out Music IOMCD 156, 1994/2004, CD)

by Mike Grimes, Published 1995-11-01

Tiles Cover art

That just has to be Max Bacon on vocals! It must be – you know that singer guy from GTR, the most progressive rock band that Steve Howe and Steve Hackett were ever in? If I had to pick out someone else who Rarick sounded like, it would be really tough, but I'd have to go with Don Dokken – just a little bit though on the louder parts. Rarick, like Bacon, has a good range but, also like Bacon, has kind of a thin voice. It's hard to buy some of the more irate lyrics when the guy has such a pure and clean tone. Before it starts to sound like I'm slamming the guy, let me add that Rarick is actually a good vocalist and adds some worthy backing vocal harmonies too. But man, did I mention that he sure sounds a lot like...

The band's sound is guitar driven. There are a few scattered keyboard lines, but they are so infrequent and secondary that they aren't really part of the band's sound. Guitarist Chris Herin is responsible for most of the album's sonic variety. His sound reminds me at times of Andy Summers, Alex Lifeson, and Eric Johnson. Each track uses different guitar tones, and Herin stays away from playing too many power chords. He's always strumming something melodic and he plays in a distinct style for each of the tracks. While almost all the songs are guitar / bass / drums trio arrangements, because of the guitarist's impressive stylistic palette, no two songs really sound alike. That in itself is pretty impressive. The entire band can sound like mid-80s-era Rush at times, especially "Token Pledge." For the most part though, Tiles' sound is pretty distinctive. The drummer surely doesn't sound like Neil Peart, and the bass playing is quite funky throughout the entire album with picking and slapping galore. "Retrospect" is an interesting acoustic guitar solo with some stimulating melodies. The instrumental section of "Dancing Dogs" is one of the coolest parts of the album, and "Scattergram" utilizes unexpected chord changes in the chorus to great effect. Fans of any of the influences listed above will surely enjoy this release. It's pretty much rock-formatted, song-oriented numbers, but the guitarist's versatility provides the necessary touch to keep each tune interesting.


Filed under: Reissues, Issue 8, 2004 releases, 1994 recordings

Related artist(s): Tiles

Latest news

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the ago of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

The Jeremy Cubert Project - From A to B – Back in Exposé #18, I reviewed the first Psycho-Audible release, Alpha Centauri by Zapotec. This Psycho-Audible disc features the same key players: guitarist Bill Curtis, violinist Anna...  (2001) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues