Mike EloshMike Elosh
Rockville, MD 20848-0384
A review written for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
This CD is a full guitar and vocals recording. Only Mike, his songs and his guitar. It is rare that this kind of CD holds the listener's attention for the the full length of the recording. But this one does. Elosh has an expressive and convincing voice that makes you believe in what he is singing, and that he is singing every word with all his heart. The reason for this may be due to the fact that this is a short CD, less than forty minutes long. But the good part of it is that there are no fillers on Black Ink.|
Although Mike states that he doesn't like comparisons, there is no other way to describe his music than the word Dylanesque. He is very much in the style invented by Bob Dylan, and also reminiscent of other S.O.D.'s (sons of Dylan) like Butch Hancock, Peter Himmelman, Jeff Wilkinson, Jimmy Lafave, Steve Forbert, and many others. I don't think this is some kind of lacuna, but it is the weakness of the CD: Elosh has not developed a voice of his own, but he may be on his way in the near future. It is normal that artists remain under the influence of another artist until they free themselves. It took a few albums for Jeff Wilkinson to untie himself from Dylan and do his greatest work on Just Luck.
We can see in Elosh an artist in the making and a very good, disciplined and engaging one in his way. Any one of his songs could make a great evening at a cafe. I especially liked Baltimore, a song about memory, in which he sings:
The whole ambience of the song reminded me of Dylan's One Too Many Mornings. Many of Elosh's songs have some kind of philosophy in them and a bit of protest, but not as much as any of those Sixties songs. In Soldier, he sings:
I enjoyed this CD very much, and listened to it many times. If you like Dylan, or an acoustic and intimate singing style, or if you think Dan Bern has gone too far, I think that Elosh is someone you might enjoy listening to.
Edited by Roberta B. Schwartz