Wednesday, April 23, 2014


Artist: Lee Abramson
Album: Abramsonium
Review by Rhonda Readence

Despite being wheelchair bound and afflicted with ALS, Lee Abramson has succeeded in creating music using a computer and music notation software. He composes using one finger and a touch pad. Using his own voice to sing, through the ModelTalker voice synthesizer, gives his music a techno electronic feel. Abramson is able to reach several varying octaves using this method and his music is as unique and original as the artist creating it.

Abramsonium is a lengthy 19-song album rife with exceptional sound quality and a distinct style that simply cannot be replicated. Abramson’s version of The Star Spangled Banner puts an entire new twist on this patriotic classic and his synthesized voice sounds robotic and oddly beautiful. This basic and bare bones offering is but a small taste of what Abramson can do.

“Paisley Butterfly” is the first track on the album that highlights this artist’s skill at the controls and his exceptional talent for composing songs. Carrying a slight jazzy feel, this stunning piece has a smooth fluidity to it akin to liquid silk. “My Creole Belle” is one of the tracks on the album with crisp, clean vocals and this exquisite offering couples soft techno sounds with a country flair. Abramson makes these two genres go together like bread and butter.

“Pardoning Courage” is one of the more standout pieces on the album and contains soundclips of President Obama speaking. The layers within this song are phenomenal and the skill with which this piece was composed is fantastic. There is a melodic, haunting essence to this offering that will enthrall listeners and the sound quality is nothing short of stellar. “Freight Train” is another exceptional piece of work with regards to intricate composition and Abramson’s supreme skill at coupling light vocals with computerized sound effects with nary a hitch.

“Problem Child” is an excellent example of the technology that allows Abramson to hit high notes with ease, and this bluesy offering is smooth and rhythmic. The vocals are not always spot on, but considering the technique involved, this is hardly taking away from the song. “Masquerade” is a light jazzy number and will bring to mind glittering ballrooms and beautiful people. Abramson’s talent is evident throughout the album, but it shines most stunningly within this track.

Abramsonium is more than just an album of music that sounds incredible. It is also a testament to the drive and the determination that guides musicians in their journey of creativity. Lee Abramson may be in a wheelchair, ravaged from the effects of ALS, but his love of music and his desire to create it has overcome all obstacles. With the help of technology, Abramson has given the world not only a great work of art, but also a wonderful example of courage, strength and perseverance.

Reviewed by Rhonda Readence
5 stars (out of 5)