Whether it is a spot of Americana you are after, or some blues or jangly rockabilly riffs, Stan Snow has got you generously covered with his latest album release, a wealthy collection of songs titled ‘Into the Great Beyond’.

Member of acclaimed band The Sundogs, Stan Snow is a Seattle-based multi-disciplinary artist, mainly dabbling with music and filmmaking. His music blurs the boundaries between things ranging from twangy country all the way to indie rock, creating an eclectic fusion that’s hard to pin down, but easy to indulge and absorb. Snow’s latest album is home to a dazzling array of musical talents in a beautifully curated set of features that includes the likes of Abe Laboriel Jr. (Paul McCartney) and Lyle Workman (Beck). 

Deep lyrics, heartfelt composition, rich arrangements, and throughout this album’s thirteen songs. Highlighted throughout by Stan Snow’s restrained and composed delivery that drips with a mature sense of presence that’s heartwarming on its own, the album’s fifth cut ‘Gone Too Fast’ is an amazing example. A piano-driven ballad that’s characterized by a warm sounding grand piano, grandiose composition that uses deep-hitting chord inversions to deliver the soulful progressions, and a delightfully laid-back and controlled rhythm guitar performance. The second piece, titled ‘Chemical Fallacy’, showcases Stan Snow’s knack for arranging for funk. The piece’s slow tempo, acidic progressions, and tasty tones and timbres make for one of the album’s most entertaining listens, and the folky starter ‘Guard’ is a misleading start, in the best way possible. With touching acoustic guitar playing of a lush composition, the breezy arrangement soon gets more fleshed out with syncopated beats and ornamentations that make it even more compelling and inviting.

The impressive classic rock influences of ‘Insanity Repeats’ include a gorgeous blend of acoustic guitar riff age with overdriven tone heaven, tight drumming, and a whole vibe. A cut that easily reminds of Beni Hughes and My Morning Jacket’s earlier releases, while having a crisp sound all on its own, with fabulous solos. One of the album’s defining highlights with no shadow of a doubt. The title cut’s syncopated and start-stop riffs are a jangly departure from the album’s mostly conventional tonalities into some kind of jungle mix. The tribal rhythms, blaring horns, and fuzzed out guitar leads are the fusion I never knew I needed until I heard ‘Into the Great Beyond’. ‘Jungle’ has a looming progression delivered via an unerring arpeggio played on a mandolin, accompanied by curtains of lush synth pads and passionate staccato strings. The song gets progressively tighter and punchier until its abrupt end, which left me hungry for more.  

The jazz funk riffs on ‘Change’ are played on top of Laboriel’s gregarious drumming, and next to Workman’s masterful solos, in a stunning display of musicality from all parties involved. Richly written and produced, soulfully delivered and performed, ‘Change’ is one more of the album’s defining centerpieces. Ending the album on a similar note to its start, ‘Seasons’ is a haunting acoustic composition that brings to mind some of Jimmy Page’s timeless acoustic masterpieces. Multi-phased and ever expanding, the song slowly blooms into something truly fantastic and inspired, with classic rock riffs that blend Celtic folk with swamp blues in a delightful array of musical parts. An unforgettable closer.

‘Into the Great Beyond’ is a sprawling piece of work from an accomplished musician and artist whose confidence and expertise easily shine through each one of those songs. Varied and endlessly colorful, the album offers a smorgasbord of styles that are all impeccably delivered. A truly epic release from one of the under-appreciated greats, Mr. Stan Snow.