Reviews of “Down in the West Volume 2”
“Kyle delivers on Down in the West Volume 2. Nothing new in that. We’ve come to expect these treats from him to be tasty every time. We love just about everything he does, and so do our listeners!” —Bill Margeson, Presenter for liveIreland.com and WDCB Radio, Chicago. Irish American News Chicago USA, Irish Music Magazine Dublin, Ireland.
With “Down in the West Volume 2,” San Anselmo singer-songwriter Kyle Alden adds to his growing reputation as Marin’s musical poet laureate. …another ear-pleasing crop of beautifully poetic, occasionally funny, intelligent and thoughtful Americana with an Irish lilt. This is the rare album that’s satisfying both musically and intellectually, a record for grown-ups to be played and enjoyed time and again.–Paul Liberatore, Marin Independent Journal, San Rafael, CA
“Down in the West Volume 2 is a snapshot of the wide-roaming mind of Kyle Alden, both as a songwriter and as a tunesmith/instrumental musician. The album effortlessly blends American and Irish traditions in a setting so natural that the listener would be hard-pressed to find where one tradition ends and the other begins…Throughout, Alden’s wry sense of humor and rich folk baritone carry the songs into interesting new territory, pushing the tradition away from a sense of somber history and into a place that speaks to our modern world with old words.” –Tradconnect.com, Dublin, Ireland
Reviews of “Songs from Yeats’ Bee-Loud Glade”
“Kyle Alden’s melodies and performance rank with the most-pleasing-to-hear of any settings of W.B. Yeats I’ve heard. Excellent work!”–Andrew McGowan, president, W.B. Yeats Society of NY.
“A great album–one of the best of 2011.” –John Weingart, Music You Can’t Hear On The Radio, Princeton, NJ
“… your song treatments of the Yeats poems…are really, really impressive and most refreshing. By far the best musical arrangements of his poems I have ever heard. An absolute pleasure to listen to. And Athena’s playing is lovely on them as well. …extraordinary music”.—Mick Moloney, Professor of Irish Studies, NYU
“Alden has crafted a notably imaginative album. There’s persuasive power and control in the singing. The tunes and texts are well-matched and the arrangements and playing are top drawer. It’s a sharply sweet suite of songs.”–Tom Clancy, The Old Blog Node
“…a complete and marvelous surprise. You really have made something new, fresh, relevant and compelling from this fine, but dusty old verse. There is hardly a song in the collection that won’t find it’s way enthusiastically to The Road Home. Thank you, thank you – well done!” –Bob Chelmick, CKUA Radio Station, Alberta, Canada
“ One of those ”maybe this shouldn’t work, but hell, it does!” discs, where San Francisco-based singer/songwriter Kyle, with help from Athena Tergis, Mike Marshall, et al, creates genuinely fresh-sounding capital from Yeats’ words, with 13 of the man’s poems rendered in an appealing folk-bluegrass-Americana idiom that proves extremely persuasive. A real grower.” — fRoots Magazine, UK
“If William Butler were still around he’d be humming along in some Bee Loud Glade, Guinness in hand…” –Mike Rowe, television personality, Dirty Jobs
“Alden is a very good songwriter. The tunes sound more like American folk than anything else, with the lyrics inspiring his own native creativity rather than imitating an Irish tradition. The melodies and Alden’s delivery suit the words so well that it’s hard to imagine that they weren’t written for each other by a single hand. … fine interplay from excellent musicians on stories that are well worth hearing.” ––Richard Price, Amazon.com
“…an inspired and sensitive presentation of the much-loved poems, performed with great skill and musicality… a joyful blending of word and melody. This is one of those albums I shall keep ready at hand and listen to again and again. –Aidan O’Hara, Irish Musician Magazine, Dublin, IR
“Fascinating and utterly disarming…by consciously avoiding conspicuous “Irishness” in his adaptations, Alden makes the emotional and spiritual qualities of Yeats’ poems seem all the more universal.” –Sean Smith, Boston Irish Reporter
“Here is something really new, different, and wonderful. … Highly creative and beautifully done. No one more than Yeats would appreciate an artistic endeavor of such soul and depth.” –Bill Margeson, The Irish American News, Chicago and LiveIreland, Dublin, IR
“Songs from Yeats’ Bee-Loud Glade is an extraordinary achievement. Yeats, who died in 1939, never sounded better”—Paul Liberatore, Marin Independent Jounal, San Rafael, CA
Reviews of “Hello Again Kind Stranger”
… a very impressive musical production from start to finish. ..(Alden) possesses enough musical talent & songwriting prowess to be extremely dangerous. The musicianship is first rate.
–Cyrus Rhodes, Muses Muse
What I heard put a smile on my face. It’s a nice easy flowing record that delivers solid songwriting … a solid release with many feel-good rock grooves with a pleasant rock driven guitar sound that is a pleasure to listen to. It’s a record that gives us a fresh glimpse at an amazing artist.
–Kevin Huber, Skope Magazine
The song writing is excellent. The arrangements, simple and direct, let you discover the essence of his songs. The lyrics fit the music perfectly. Kyle’s voice makes listening to this CD a West Coast journey through the spiritual wanderings of a modern traveller.
–Ivan Nossa, Muses Muse
Reviews of “Down In The West Volume 1”
… intelligent, thoughtful, skillfully performed original acoustic Americana with an Irish lilt.
–Paul Liberatore, Marin IJ, Fall 2013
We loaded your CD, Kyle, and loved (LOVED!) every minute of it. Had to sit in the driveway and finish it, even though we were both beat. Congratulations! Your commitment to your art is producing spectacular results.
–Lisa Hauk-Loy, Music Fan, Marin County, CA