My Shadow Reviews


Listening to this music set my imagination roaming within mystical aspects of design.  MY SHADOW is the musical inspiration for these album graphics. It was one hell of an exciting ride to work with Russil.  Salute!
Marina Shtatlender, artist, Munich/NYC
I loved this album! Great for dancing or just listening. An eclectic mix of styles. Inspiring!
Christine Crawford, fan, California
Get ready for a circus of sounds! The “My Shadow” album is an eclectic concoction of music styles and emotional transitions. The album kicks off with an immediate dive into the upbeat funk of “soul-ar magic.” Rightfully titled “Searching for Soul.” The talented artist then transitions into a heavy rock tribal jam with a striking lead guitar lacing reckless beauty across the background. You’re being taken on a wild journey, varying from soulful sensations to classic tribe culture beats, soothing folk, mellow rock songs, and extraterrestrial electronica tunes. The man has a satisfyingly subliminal way of getting into your head as you travel through various areas of his mind. Whatever you were on while you crafted this album, I want some, Sir! Absolutely unable to be classified, duplicated, or disliked by any means, Russil will have you feeling completely “radiant” and yearning to be “taken in space” before the end of part one. Get ready, your ears haven’t experienced anything quite as magical as this!
Guianna Brantley, soul singer, Florida
There are so few MCs around nowadays. Sure, there are dozens of Mic Controllas, Mic Clutchas and Mic Checkas, but very few true Masters of Ceremonies. You know, the hat-and tails-clad guys that keep even the most eclectic collection of entertainment from flying apart at the seams. On his second disc, “My Shadow”, Russil “Radiance” Tamsen takes on the more classic role, leading listeners on a trek down a series of luminescent sonic side roads, lined with an ever-changing selection of stylistic flavors, eccentric musings and vaguely theatrical arrangements. A journey to the center of an Ivy League-educated sometime Francophile with an idiosyncratic muse, “My Shadow” is at once casual, funny and unselfconscious enough to make being all over the map seem like a lot of fun. Playing nearly all the instruments, and writing and arranging all the tunes, Russil skims a lot of territory, never quite touching down in any one place for long. There’s the Bronx-bred electro beat that underpins “Searching for Soul”, and the Mediterranean strings of “SuperGlamBitches”. He weaves wry wordplay into the reggae-ish “Grip”, offhand vocal characterizations into “Pride of Barbados” and semiotic catchphrases (“Ink dried/your word was greedy lies”) into the Native American-themed “Satchawayakan”. Russil calls his style “Florida Soul”, which seems a mundane term until you realize he’s talking about Carl Hiaasen’s Florida, Dave Barrys’ Florida… Not Disney’s or Rick Scott’s. “My Shadow” – a sonic vaccine against the blanding of Russil’s adopted hometown – shows why this kind of soul is well worth saving.
Tony Green (Florida), guitarist and music critic, has written for Vibe, Spin, Rolling Stone, and other music publications.
It takes an amazing amount of brilliance to create a shadow this nuanced! One of the greatest things about discovering the works of any artist for the first time is that, if we’re mindful of our own reactions, we get to rediscover long-lost aspects of ourselves through them. And meandering through the subtly nuanced pastiche of aural textures and colors Radiance has managed to pack into this CD was just such an experience, for me! At first listening, I thought my favorite piece just HAD to be “Catch Like A Star”… but then, “Sing Hello” jumped out at me, and later on, “Tantra & Passion” hit me where I live! With each subsequent exposure to these deeply grooving sound paintings, I found more to like — so much so that when my own band hits the road, a few weeks from now, MY SHADOW will be coming along for the ride, just as it should, to inspire, delight, confound, and generally clear the musical palate for whatever the next course brings my way… Thanks, man, you’ve definitely given me pause to think, and grooves to launch this drummer into an entirely new set of associations, the next time someone quotes a phrase during one of their solos.
Doug Turet, drummer, Boston
I’d first like to start with this: Radiance, my friend you have quite a talent. This cd was like a visual rollercoaster for me. At times I could almost see this ride and the journey you took to create such a fabulous piece of work. It would be an awesome show piece for sure! Music like this gives such a visual. With the right creator/choreographer behind it I could see some amazing productions in its future! It’s the most unique cd I’ve heard in a very long time. Thanks so much for sharing with us such an eclectic piece of work! Shimmy on,
Michelle “Saphira”, bellydancer, Florida
I feel this CD is a word lover’s wet dream. Lyrical, satirical, spiritual, delightfully twisted, entertaining. When I first got the CD I was expecting yet another banal album. Wrong. This is more like a collection of clever poetry set to music. Not rap, although there are hints of that, but good vocals. Radiance is a genuinely talented artist. Some of the influences I hear, are Talking Heads, Eminem, U2, oh and Zappa. Yes, Frank probably would have appreciated and bought this one himself lol. The album sarcastically touches on many subjects, from the wealthy elite to our financial crises to swingers. I enjoyed it. If I had to make any suggestion, I would say a couple more tunes with a heavier dance beat. A few of them are funkalicious but the dancer in me always wants more 😉 Overall this CD is an eargasm.
Kimara Lee, bellydancer, Florida
it’s amazing how the FUNK is alive and well, considering all the other genres that come and go. Here in this album, Funk is revived and contrived, and it’s a goooood thing, to which i can certainly relate. I hear in it so much alt-funk like Was Not Was, XTC, Julian Schnabel, Hybrasil, Buckshot Lefonque, Beck, and other soulful ‘heady’ funksters, these being some artists from the 80s/90s that spring to mind. I like the opening cut a lot. I loved SuperGlamBitches, really really funny, especially the beginning. And Pride of Barbados… hahahahaha NICE! Reminds me of a couple of bands i played in! :)) Really, really like Grip and Forbidden Love: stunningly, surprisingly melodic! I like the Scott Henderson guitar tone/style in Magnetism! Hedging My Bets, Sing Hello, Trimaran, and Tantra are just brilliant gems stuck at the very end that put the cherry on top and whet the appetite for the next release! Thanks for doing this music, and sharing it. It’s an awesome album, and you’re very talented. Hella voice! I really enjoyed listening – again – and will do so many more times in the future. Keep doing your art, Russil, we could all use a little bit of your gooooooood radiance!
Oded Fried-Gaon of Miles of Music Publishing Ltd., Israel
Well done! Indeed, a slick and uplifting production. I was inspired by the eclectic and tasty cross breed of the best of The Talking Heads, U2, Hip Hop, Soul and dynamic-funk-consciousness… Musically sophisticated, lyrically thought-provoking, a smooth blend that feels international, worldly, modern, hip. Turn it up, it’s a journey worth taking. Great lyrics, very groovy. Top notch.
Brian B. Jones of the Brian Jones Rock’n’Roll Revival, San Diego, CA
The banana peeling girl on the cover art is fun. Cool see-through green. Impressive vocal acrobatics. Catchy songs, warming and lighting up a cold dark universe. Life is always rebuilding, isn’t she? “Towel on your ass/ BBQ going fast/ As a plaster cast/ that’s been blasted away by the past!” Shortening the long shot at catching a star. Russil’s songs go lots of places, and that’s just the first four… An interesting blend of images, scenes, attitudes, payoffs. Does cosmic ever go out of style? I mean, we are cosmic, all the time… Possibilities of threesomes, I can see that. Was it from personal experience lol? A lot of images are crafted here. Lots of changes in timings, tempo, syncopation. Some of those verbal accents are funny, but it can get kind of serious, too. Doors appear, side by side sometimes, then hallways stretch out again. Will necessitate more listening and seeing into!
Steve Haag, Philosopher, Flagstaff AZ