TERRY BROWN - Out On The Tiles!
by Martin Popoff

Tiles is a top-notch Detroit band bent on the progressive, and actually quite bent on Rush, quite interestingly sounding not like the classic era material from the canny Canucks, but more so the late '80s, early '90s version of the band. Their fifth album, Fly Paper, is out now, and to further the Rush comparatives, it's produced by Rush production legend Terry Brown (also Max Webster, Fates Warning, Voivod), who gives us a quick recap of his experience with the band's Chris Herrin, Paul Rarick, Jeff Whittle and Mark Evans...

"Well, the album was made over a slightly longer time period," says Brown. "Because they were coming to Toronto to do it; we did it at the studio, at the Blister Factory, and it was sort of between their working schedules as much as anything. So we actually did it on a weekend, like Friday through Monday, and we sort of spread that out over a period of about a year, year and a half. It took a little while to make, but we managed to stay very focused on it, and I think it came out really nice. This record is a little more concise, a little more, dare I say commercial than the last one. We didn't go for the 18 minute opening opus (laughs), which kind of put some people off (laughs). This one is a little more concise, and the songs are well-crafted, with really strong melodies. And we had some really nice guests on this one. We thought, you know what? Why don't we get as many guests as we can, just to give it a little bit more of a calling card than we had before. So we had Alex Lifeson from Rush on it ('Sacred & Mundane'), and we have Alannah Miles singing on one song ('Back & Forth'), and Kim Mitchell is guesting as a soloist on one tune. That one is called 'Dragons, Dreams & Daring Deeds' and he's playing a solo. That's actually quite a long piece, but he's playing the solo at sort of the five-minute mark of that song. And then, who else? Hugh Syme is playing on it ('Crowded Emptiness'). Matthew Palmenter is playing some keyboards on it; he's a friend of the band from Detroit. And also Sonya Mastick - she is playing percussion; she did a really nice job too. And Nate Mills from The Kittens is singing one word (laughs), so that was kind of cool. So we got a whole bunch of nice people singing and playing and getting into the full spirit of things. I think it's a really great record; I'm very happy with it."

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