Accueil Critique de disque Micah Sheveloff "Exhibitionist"

Micah Sheveloff "Exhibitionist"

Micah Sheveloff "Exhibitionist"
Micah Scheveloff

Il nous arrive tous dans la vie de faire des rencontres que l’on qualifient de relation d’affaire, sans plus. Puis un jour, on découvre le vrai visage de la personne en question pour se rendre à l’évidence, c’est un artiste.

Du coup, la relation prend une toute autre tournure. Je connais Micah depuis plusieurs années, nous nous sommes croisés au CES de Vegas, au SSI de Montréal à quelques reprises, mais toujours dans ce cadre rigide de notre profession et ses distances imposées.
Puis un beau matin je reçois un courriel de Micah qui m’annonce la sortie imminente de son premier album au piano, quelle ne fut pas ma surprise.

Micah Sheveloff « Exhibitionist »

Une découverte, un disque plaisant à écouter et puis un nouveau disque c’est toujours une fête, un événement spécial dans la vie d’un artiste, donc « Exhibitionist » est mon coup de cœur de la semaine.
Alors, puisque vous ne le connaissez pas et que je découvre avec vous ses talents de compositeur et interprète, Micah a accepté gentiment de se prêter au jeu des fameuses question/réponse dont nous sommes coutumiers.
Notre entrevue est en anglais, forcément, Micah Sheveloff vit aux USA et ne parle pas français.

Hi Micah, can you introduce member of the band to our readership?

Tracks 2,3,5,6,7 the band is:
Micah Sheveloff—piano, organ, vocals
Clint Amereno—bass
Greg Trabandt—drums
Ed Vick—guitars
Suzanne Vick—harmony vocals
Tracks 1,4 the band is:
Marc Shulman—guitars
Lisa Heile and James Mix—harmony vocals
Bass and drums (same as above)
Track 8 the band is:
James Mix—lead vocal
Steve Clarke—bass
Paul Mills—drums
Paul Asbell—guitars
Track 9 (duet)
Micah Sheveloff—piano, arrangement
Mike Munro—lead vocals
Track 10 (duet)
Micah Sheveloff—piano, arrangement
Rick Berlin—lead vocals
All songs ©WIRC Music (ASCAP)
except where noted:
1) Tumble (Sheveloff)
2) Til The End (Sheveloff, Perrouna)
3) Stand me Up (Sheveloff)
4) Late Train Home (Sheveloff)
5) Fallen At My Feet (Sheveloff)
6) Barren Man (Sheveloff)
7) Baltimore (Sheveloff, Perrouna)
8) Too Many Times (Sheveloff, Mix)
9) Heaven and Hell (Butler, Dio, Iommi, Ward) (Essex Music, Inc, Niji Music)
10) Heaven Tonight (R. Nielsen, Tom Petersson) ©Adult Music
Produced by Micah Sheveloff
Mastered by Nathan James, Vault Mastering
CD Artwork by Trigram Media/David Cubine.

Management contact: Bernadette Brennan 212-757-1669
Legal contact: Nick Ferrara 212-245-5700

Tell us about your individual background?

Playing music since the age of three, Micah Sheveloff is a Boston-born pianist and songwriter who merged an intense classical music foundation with a unique feel for popular song craftsmanship. Sheveloff’s father Joel was a renowned Boston University music professor for nearly 50 years before recently retiring. Micah Sheveloff’ was a fixture in the Boston music scene, having shared the stage with The Detours and Gary Cherone before founding The Voodoo Jets with drummer John Fowler (Steelheart) and Francesco Perrouna. Sheveloff has recorded with artists such as Marc Shulman (Suzanne Vega), Mike Malinin (Goo Goo Dolls), Meliah Rage and others. Sheveloff has a passion for great sound and has been an outspoken advocate for high-performance audio as well as old school recording techniques.

What or who were your influences?

I have had such an unusual mix of influences that have led me to make this record. I was drawn to Stravinsky and Bartok in the classical realm, I love Gershwin songs and I also fell in love with loud power pop bands like Cheap Trick and Jellyfish. More recently, I have been listening to Lyle Lovett, Harry Connick Jr., Patricia Barber and others. I was also always blown away by the harmonies and chord changes Brian Wilson crafted with The Beach Boys. I have a huge soft spot for 1970’s pop!!

Tell us about your favourite instruments and why they are? Which one do you use on a regular basis.

I play piano. I am able to play the Hammond B3 parts on the record but there are players who are masters of the B3 and I am certainly not one. I consider myself a solid composer and pianist within the pop realm— I am no classical virtuoso. I have known many A-list pianists and they possess a very special and hard-earned gift.

Do you rather perform studio or live?

I certainly enjoy both live performance and studio work. In my rock and roll days, it was easier to show up with a rig and play clubs. This record really requires a house piano—I am looking into live venues now in New York and Boston to start.

Describe your music and the public you are aiming at?

The Exhibitionist record represents for me a sudden undeniable need to sing my own songs in an intimate band setting or solo. To quote Oprah, “everyone on earth has a calling,” and I feel like writing, playing and singing these songs is mine. I wasn’t really aiming at any segment of humanity—I was just writing songs that worked for me and here they are!

Your album are very well recorded, is it your own preoccupation or you leave the technical stuff to somebody else?

Thank you!! For the record, I am the producer. The production was indeed a huge issue for me, from the instruments used, the microphones, the effects, and the mastering. I wanted real dynamic range and space on this record. I mixed the vocals BIG. Tracks 1-7 are recorded live to analog tape (piano, bass, drums, rhythm guitar together) and the only sample on the whole record is a French Horn on Barren Man. I avoided auto-tune like the plague so that the listener hears my voice and not a machine (for better or worse). I listened to countless mixes and three different masters before I was done.

Do you have preference on the recording material you use?

I think good engineers get comfortable with a particular room or with the mixing board, outboard gear, effects, etc. I knew the sound I wanted and I played several cuts before we even got started so we had an agreed upon point of reference out of the gate. I am certainly not an engineer so I leave the technical “heavy lifting” to those qualified—then I use my ears to guide me through recording. I will say that the 9-foot Steinway I played on tracks 1-7 is one of my favorite pianos. It sings…

Some record buyers often complain on the low recording quality. What do you think about those people?

I applaud them—I wish more people would pay attention to recording quality and overuse of compression. I decided to release my record on HD Tracks because MP3’s suck—they are a hazy reflection of what I worked so hard to create. The more people seeking great sound the better!!

Looking back, are you satisfied of the path that leaded you to « Exhibitionist»?

I am indeed! I can point to one or two details I would change about the record but for the most part I am happy with it and I loved making the record. In many ways, I have been working toward this release my whole life—finally I overcame the fear of singing and I work hard and practice relentlessly. Working with great players, singers, engineers and producers was well worth it and so rewarding!

Do you listen to other artist music?

I have a big LP collection and I also love live concert Blu-rays. I listen to music all the time, especially what moves me. I often speak about it on my BLOG at

What are your visions on the future of the CD?

I think people own large CD collections so they won’t vanish immediately but with music in the cloud and media servers that deliver super quality and easy access from an iPad or iPhone—I think the CD is all but dead!

Any live performances on the near future or road tour planed?

I am pondering what to do about playing live—stay tuned on that. For now, people can enjoy track 9 on YouTube…filmed at a concert hall in Boston, MA

Any dream still to realise?

Absolutely! I would love to land a song in a movie—that would be the coolest thing! I’d also like to play some live shows if I can find a way to make it happen.

Do you wish to say something to your fan?

I think I have said mostly everything already, but I am thankful for all of the wonderful e-mails and comments on Facebook since the release of the record in late August. I think some listeners are taken aback by the starkness of the recording—there are almost no effects on the vocals—but the title (Exhibitionist) was all about being real, being naked so to speak, a little bit of counter culture away from the over-produced records out there. I hope people enjoy the songs!


Je reconnais toutes les influences en particulier celles de Harry Connick Jr et Patricia Barber, ou du moins une grande partie de ces dernières dans cet album. J’ai également immédiatement fait le parallèle avec Anne Bisson, et je pense assurément à son disque « Blue mind », du moins dans le style cosy et Jack Johnson pour ses ballades.
Cependant, Micah Sheveloff avec « Exhibitionist » est allé un peu plus loin dans ses compositions et arrangements, on sent une grande cohérence au niveau de la production, ses influences classiques sont indéniables. Les musiciens invités s’accordent à merveille, pas un au dessus de l’autre. S’il a produit lui même ce disque, il est clair qu’il y a mis beaucoup de lui même, avec notamment une attention toute particulière dés la prise de son jusqu’au mastering afin de conserver au plus proche, cette part d’humanité qu’il y a dans ses compositions et son interprétation.
La prise de son fait la part belle aux détails de la voix, mais également du lieu dans lequel les micros ont été installés, nous sommes dans un environnement acoustique viable, où on entend l’extinction des notes du piano sans effort, ainsi que le souffle de la voix.
J’ai particulièrement apprécié d’entendre plus distinctement le drum qui d’habitude est en retrait dans ce type d’enregistrement.
Le genre musical fait très penser à l’ambiance club feutrée, un verre de Champagne ou Porto millésimé à la main, en croquant un morceau de chocolat, cela va de soit.
La plage N°7 « Baltimore » est différente, un peu plus rock.
Plage N°9 « Heaven and Hell »… il y a du Roger Waters là dessous 🙂
Dernière chose, l’album est proposé en résolution de 24/96, ce qui va ravir les aficionados de musique HD.
Bref, vous l’aurez compris, on ne s’ennuie pas une minute lors de l’écoute de ce disque jazzy rock classique. Même si l’esprit de l’auteur est là, Micah a su se diversifier tout au long des 10 plages musicales.
Je ne serais pas étonné de voir poindre ce disque à l’horizon d’un succès bien mérité.

Pour apprécier ce disque, j’ai utilisé l’écoute au casque Sennheiser HD598 ainsi que mon système stéréo depuis un Mac Book Pro i7 vers le DAC Calyx Femto, l’amplificateur Gemincore et une paire d’enceintes acoustiques hybrides Monsoon FPF 1000.

Contact et information

Micah Sheveloff
Management contact: Bernadette Brennan 212-757-1669
Legal contact: Nick Ferrara 212-245-5700.

La pensée du moment :

De la musique avant toute chose
De la musique encore et toujours !
Et tout le reste est littérature
Paul Verlaine (1844 ? 1896)

Cet article a été rédigé par Marc PHILIP, rédacteur indépendant, tous droits réservés, copyright 2012, les textes et photos sont la propriété de l’auteur et du magazine.

Bonne journée et bon divertissement.

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