Monday, April 30, 2007

***Gustafer Yellowgold***

So much has already been said by so many reviewers about this wonderful, wonderful project, there's really nothing left to say about the re-release. Wait, lemme say this: if there is ANY possibility of seeing Morgan Taylor's live multimedia presentation of the Gustafer Yellowgold story, you MUST go. I've seen grown men crying with joy at the end of "New Blue Star" when all the children in the audience are blissfully singing "Neeeeeeeww Bluuuuuuue Staaaaar!!!" Absolutely heavenly.


And with the new release you get two additional songs: "A Cooler World", which could be Taylor thinking ahead to the possibility of an animated series, because this little ditty succinctly encapsulates everything Gustaferish within a perfect pop tune; and "Rocket Shoes", a typically wistful Taylor tune that fits right in with the feel of the older songs. Both have been available for a while on the Gustafer website, but it's nice to have them incorporated into the total storyline and CD/DVD package.
Here's what I had to say about the original DVD-only release:


Wednesday, May 17, 2006

As you sit reading this review, I feel sorry for you, I truly do. For you see, friends, the minutes you waste eyeballing these pitifully mundane comments are minutes you could be digging this mindblowingly awesome DVD. This stuff is so far ahead of typical kids' entertainment, everyone else might as well give up. OK, allow me to back up and let you in on what all this proselytizing is about.

Illustrator/songwriter Morgan Taylor, originally from Dayton, Ohio, currently a Lower East Side resident, is the creator of Gustafer Yellowgold, a character from the Sun who befriends otherwise friendless beings like a flightless pterodactyl, a crying green bee, a dragon who makes his home in a fireplace, and an eel. Gustafer Yellowgold's Wide Wild World is the soundtrack of their intertwining lives, filled with stories of friendship, loneliness, loss, death, and love. But these subjects are dealt with in such a subdued manner that you don't so much read the lyrics or hear the music, you feel them, you understand the emotions channeled through the songs, you empathize with the characters.

The eight songs on the DVD are iconographically illustrated with Morgan's simple and colorful drawings, enclosed within a square wooden frame, and lyrics to each stanza appear on the frame as each song flows by. The DVD also includes wordless versions of all the songs so you and your little ones can sing along with "I'm From the Sun", "Your Eel", "New Blue Star", and the rest of the joyous tunes and aching melodies.

After having opened for bands such as the Polyphonic Spree and Wilco, Morgan is currently performing the Gustafer Yellowgold music locally, playing live as the images from the DVD are projected onto a screen. If you live near NYC, go see the show. If you live anywhere else in the world, come see the show. If you are of this universe, buy the DVD and share it with everyone you know.