Mike Alviano Radiate

Many familiar with the Kitchener-Waterloo music scene of the early 1990s recall the band Strange Days. The group’s lead singer Shannon Lyon has gone on to become one of the country’s more talented troubadours. What people may not be as familiar with is that the band’s break up also spawned another accomplished songsmith — Mike Alviano. The rising singer-songwriter returns with the sunny sounds of his sophomore release Radiate — his follow up to Jubilee. The songwriting is more mature, the lyrics continue to evolve, and Alviano’s voice feels more confident. These 11 songs document the folk singer’s travels from northern Ontario to Vancouver Island over the last few years by capturing the people, places and reflections of his tours. In poetic paintings, Alviano depicts his ethos of life. No song shows this better than the aptly-titled "This is Life,” with lingering lyrics such as "An old man approaches me, his body is shaken/ I can see by the wrinkles around his eyes/ He knows what’s going on.” The catchy "Anymore” shows Alviano trying his hand at a little slide guitar with success and features harmonies by Craig Smith. "All We Are” is another mesmerising song that gets you singing along by the time the chorus comes around for the second time. Here, Alviano’s ex-Strange Days band-mate Dan Cornelius bangs on the skins. The disc closes with the heartfelt "Tunnel Mountain.” (Busted Flat)