It takes a lot of effort and talent to create a record that can take the listeners’ minds off modern day’s hassles and indulge them in a world of melodies and emotions but, Benjamin Corson did that perfectly with “Mirage”
“Mirage” kicks in with “Cracking the Code”, a lovely opener instrumental that made me a fan instantly with its insanely dynamic drums and improvisational guitars. It says a lot about Corson’s porgy psychedelic vision and influences, it starts with an intense guitar/drums conversation before going into a spacy and more psychedelic mood that ends with a haunting guitar melody. “Wild and Free” comes in introducing some powerful vocals and bluesy riffs, bringing back a lot of the old school’s blues rock magic with his rocking solos, and guitar work. “Dolion” is where Benjamin Corson’s high attention to detail shines right from the clever headphones panning at the intro. “Dolion” is a relaxing instrumental with some world class guitar work that reminded me a lot of my favorite guitar legends. It has a smooth chilling progression and escalating dynamics using his guitar skills, groovy subtle bass, and vocal harmonies that – when mixed with the beautiful atmospheric organ – sent shivers down my spine. Corson takes us into new territory with the narrative piece “You Are a Woman Now”. It’s a strong statement draped in beautiful melodies carefully crafted by guitar and organ and embraided with dreamy vocal harmonies and a solid bassline. After things got a little bit mellow with the previous two songs, Corson decides to shake things off a bit with the heavy tune “MLKDBGCHJ”. It’s the heaviest song on the record and being a fan of heavy music myself, I totally dig it! The riffs are powerful matching the sampled Malcolm X’s speech, with heavy organ and pounding drums and it doesn’t stop there, it just keeps on getting heavier as it progresses introducing some intense shredding and jazzy drums that takes us into a sharp ending. “Madseen” comes next with some Pink Floyd-ish vibes with its guitar tone, samples, and strings arrangements. It has some cool sound changes from a dreamy clean start to a more angry sound before getting back to that dreamy mood that leaves you smiling peacefully at the end. The record closes with the bluesy ballad title track “Mirage” which basically shows everything Benjamin Corson can offer. It has some beautiful vocals over bluesy chilling guitar licks showing that he can provide heartfelt ballads as well as killer emotional instrumentals. The guitar tone and effects are perfect and in perfect harmony with the vocal melody. The bass sounds so alive and contributed a lot to the song’s build up towards its big ending with those angelic vocal harmonies that shaped a perfect ending for such a beautiful journey.
“Mirage” is a well-crafted record that shows a lot of passion, talent, and musicianship by Benjamin Corson and his partners Julien Audigier, Van “Funkboy” Bodley, Annie Nungan, Vincent Martinez, Laurian Daire, Mareenez Degraff, and Tim Pitchford. It has perfectly balanced dynamics and mood with some of the most remarkable guitar work and melodies I’ve listened to lately. It’s hard to believe that this is his debut and I wish him good luck in meeting high expectations on his coming releases, you’ve set the bar so high my friend. Looking forward for more from Benjamin Corso and will definitely keep an eye on his work and I think you should too. Good luck Benjamin, cheers!