Mark Slaughter - Halfway There


by Kevin Wierzbicki

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For those of us who manage to live to be middle aged, loosely defined as from 40-years-old to 60-years-old, there comes a time of reflection about the years gone by and thoughts about the limited number of days yet to come.

For musicians, this time of life can often inform song lyrics, and that's what's going on here with Mark Slaughter's song "Halfway There," the title cut to his new album. Clearly inspired by having reached his 50s (53 to be exact), "Halfway There" is a remembrance of a man's life from the teen years on and is something that a lot of Slaughter's fans can likely relate to. And while most of the song is probably somewhat of a mirror of his own life, the song is not autobiographical, as the man Slaughter portrays in the song is doing his reminiscing from the great beyond by the time the song ends.

So the real question here is, "is Slaughter having a midlife crisis?" Is Halfway There a collection of depressing tunes? Worry not fans, as the album doesn't dwell on getting old. In fact the effort is surprisingly good, breaking out of the gate with "Hey You" where Slaughter goes nuts on the guitar, appropriate enough since the cut is a raucous love song to rock 'n' roll.

"Supernatural" is a radio-ready cut with lots of hot guitar and lyrics meant to be sung along to, and that should in any reality be a big hit. "Forevermore" is the album's big, sweeping ballad; "Conspiracy" on the other hand, with its theme of paranoia, is set to a grunge era arrangement.

"Reckless" is a bit sludgy with hints of Black Sabbath love, "Turn It" is a showcase for Slaughter's melodic guitar work and another cut that by rights should be a radio smash.

The record closes with "You're Not Here," a mellow rocker that again looks at mortality. Halfway There is a very strong effort that will please longtime fans while also expanding Slaughter's already considerable fan base. Get your copy here.

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Mark Slaughter - Halfway There
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