The new single from Oxford's Mike Hyder
Oxford's Mike Hyder is the songwriter, guitarist and singer with the British Progressive Rock/Classic Rock band, THE TREAT.
In addition to his work with THE TREAT, he also has a burgeoning solo career, having released his critically well received ‘Craftsman’ album in 2014, and now its follow up, ‘Wood & Steel’.
On his solo work, Mike Hyder concentrates more on guitar orchestration, compared with the frequent forays into exotic instrumentation found on albums by THE TREAT.
However, in addition to his guitar orchestrations, Mike Hyder retains many more prog-rock elements in his solo work, which include a broad song writing style (covering rock, prog, psychedelia, folk, country rock and occasional ethnic stylings), flashes of dextrous instrumental prowess, measured and thoughtful arrangements, mixing acoustic and electric soundscapes to present light and shade dynamics to the music, meticulous attention to production and a loose, conceptual tone running through most of the lyrical subject matter on the album.
‘Wood & Steel’ has already proved to be popular, tracks from the album having been playlisted on numerous rock and prog radio stations in the UK and worldwide. The album has been warmly received by reviewers in the UK and overseas:
From Prog Magazine:
Taking time out from The Treat, Hyder delivers Jethro Tull meets The Police on this folk/classic rock hybrid that’s heavy on rhymes and seasoned with dashes of Broadway showtune instrumentation for good measure”.
"Mike Hyder knows the value of nimble fingering, and the sonic build he employs in his use of dynamics, light and shade, soft and loud, electric and acoustic, mercurial moods, anger and rage. These are bite-size, cleverly produced tracks with no self-indulgent excess. Accept his invitation. Spin a disc, take a risk" – Andrew Darlington (Reviewer, R’n’R Magazine)
‘A really splendid album. ...sometimes all you need is a couple of guitars and a voice. Nice.’- Steve Pilkington (Editor, Rock Society Magazine)
'It’s easy to relate to this record’s emotional load yet it’s difficult not to love its weight.' - D. Epstein (Let It Rock Webzine)
“There’s anxiety oozing out of these numbers (on the album), from the nervous chords of “Don’t Look Behind You” onward, where a countrified interplay between guitar and piano creates urgency as dynamic splashes propel the flow to riff-laden paranoia – in the vein of (Fleetwood Mac’s) ‘Oh Well’” – D. Epstein (Let It Rock Webzine)
Another track (‘A Song For You’), from the ‘Wood & Steel’ album has been selected for a cover mount CD in Prog Magazine
Promotion for the album continues with the release of ‘On The Buses’, the third single from the album (Which follows ‘Don’t Look Behind You’ and ‘Continental Woman’).
Mike on ‘On The Buses’:
"This is one of my more socio-politico songs. In this case it touches on homelessness, poverty, all manner of modern social crisis, but above all – loneliness. It was inspired by several news stories – one about a woman who said she rides on the buses every day, as she couldn’t afford to heat her flat and the buses were warm. She said she also got to meet and talk to people, as she lived on her own and was lonely. The other story was about a cat that made his way to the same bus stop each day, hopped on board with people and sat curled up at the back for hours and would then hop off at exactly the same stop he got on. Bizarre, but apparently true. I stitched these 2 stories together, and added my own thoughts and appropriate narratives to it to complete, I believe, one of the highlights of the album, and one of the best songs I‘ve written".
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