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Nad Sylvan - The Regal Bastard

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Nad Sylvan
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Nad Sylvan Revisited.
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June 17, 2019
This particular recording, 'The Regal Bastard', is apparently the conclusion of ‘Nad’s’ Vampire trilogy that started in 2015 with 'Courting the Widow' and was followed in 2017 with the 'The Bride Said No'. The compositional format utilised followed a pattern whereby his ideas were distributed to a host of various musicians who then expanded on the themes he had developed. Subsequently, from the ideas and arrangements submitted back, he selected what he felt best suited his original ideas. These were then subjected to further compositional processing. Finally and when he was satisfied he carried out the final arranging, production, and mixing of the album in the studio.

It is a fairly strange album to be honest, especially upon first listening, when there seems a considerable dissimilarity between the music and the vocals. Of course with subsequent plays the individual components of the instrumentation and vocals actually do start to meld together much more. Thus allowing the music to take a firm grip of your understanding as to what it is all about and primarily the intentions of the composer. There is seemingly an overall complication about the way the music flows. For not only is the album full of jerky time signatures but is also saturated with flashes, or rather profusions of different instrumental contributions that need assimilating as to their purpose. And so, in a sense the direction of the music is quite chaotic at times, but. I must stress after a few listens such odd diversity between projected voice and instrumental accompaniment does in fact level itself out to make sense adding much panache and complementing the overall sound.

The general run of music over the nine tracks is certainly more about the creation of textures, colourfal atmospheric soundscapes, and vocal interest. Particularly delightful and integrated throughout the entire body of the music are oodles of keyboard/synthesizer embellishments and these together with delicate lead guitar flurries create together a really nice feel. There are many musical styles incorporated in the mix ranging from pop, jazz, rock with some classical overtones and exquisite choral arrangements

From a singing perspective, there is no doubt that ‘Nad’ is a brilliant vocalist whose flexibility and range is quite extensive. However, there is a lack of consistency with his vocal projection on this project, probably due to other engagements extending the length of time taken to finalise the album. For example the singing on the first track ‘I Am the Sea’ is quite frankly ‘’All At Sea’ being muffled and a little toneless, in my opinion.
Sylvan wants one day to bring the trilogy to life in a theatrical production. He has stated that he would have to carefully select songs from all three albums, and make sure they work representing the entire story. And that is the dream. of a self-declared vocal chameleon.

Summary: An interesting album of fairly diverse music ranging from a kind of Genesis feel mixed with elements of pop and soul embellished with interesting moments with complex arrangements.

Artwork: The album artwork has been created once more by Marcela Bolivar, who did such a wonderful job on other aspects of the trilogy.


1 I Am The Sea
2 Oahu
3 Whoa (Always Been Without You)
4 Meet Your Maker
5 The Regal Bastard
6 Leave Me On These Waters
7 Honey I'm Home
Bonus Tracks:
8 Diva Time
9 The Lake Isle of Innisfree

Line-Up & guest musicians:
I Am the Sea
Nad Sylvan - lead & backing vocals, keyboards, percussion
Guthrie Govan - guitar
Anders Wollbeck - keyboards, guitars, bass
Paul Mabury/That Sound - Drums
Nad Sylvan - lead & backing vocals, keyboards, guitars Jonas Reindgold - bass
Nick D'Virgilio - drums
Jade Ell - backing vocals
Sheona Urquhart - backing vocals, speaking voice
Whoa (Always Been Without You)
Nad Sylvan - lead & backing vocals, keyboards, guitars Jonas Reingold - bass
Nick D'Virgilio - drums
Jade Ell - vocals, speaking voice
Sheona Urquhart - vocals
Meet Your Maker
Nad Sylvan - lead & backing vocals, keyboards, guitars & additional percussion
Tania Doko - lead & backing vocals
Tony Levin - bass
Nick D'Virgilio - drums
The Regal Bastard
Nad Sylvan - lead & backing vocals, piano, keyboards, guitars & orchestral arrangements
Jonas Reingold - bass
Nick D'Virgilio -drums
Tania Doko - voice
Karolina Weber Ekdahl - violin and viola
Isabel Blomme - cello
String orchestration and string production - Maria Gronlund, Studiostrings
Leave Me On These Waters
Nad Sylvan - lead & backing vocals, piano, keyboards, guitar, orchestration
Jonas Reingold - Bass
Nick D'Virgilio - drums
Guhtrie Govan - guitar
Rob Townsend - soprano sax
Honey I'm home
Nad Sylvan - piano, keyboards, backing vocals
Jonas Reingold - bass
Nick D'Virgilio - drums
Steve Hackett - guitar
Nick Beggs - backing vocals
Jade Ell - backing vocals
Sheona Urquhart - backing vocals
Tania Doko - backing vocals

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