Category: Notes in the Margin Reviews
By Dave on Saturday, November 26th 2011 4:16 pm
A couple of reviews came in that I hadn't posted about yet. The first was brought to my attention by someone who recently ordered Notes in the Margin. The review is en Francais but here are a couple of excerpts the google translator didn't seem to mangle to badly.
You may be wondering why chronicle an album that came out over a year ago? Well here it is: I started this column last year that when I dropped my old PC, I lost everything and I put it aside. But lately, I was asked if I still wanted to do it and I said yes because I thought it was unfortunate not to speak of "Notes in the Margin."
"Notes in the Margin" is a varied album that will surely appeal to many of you who are looking for something different!
My only regret is not having had the opportunity to tell you about it before! As the saying goes, "It's never too late to do."
The full review is up at Progressive-area.com.
And popular webzine Progressor published a review back in September. Here is Olav's conclusion.
"Notes in the Margin" is a partially instrumental album that explores a sound that ranges from hard prog akin to Rush on the one hand to space and symphonic-tinged themes that share some characteristics with late 70's Pink Floyd. Those who enjoy both these acts might well find Dave Kulju to be an artist worthwhile exploring, and I suspect that this album might also appeal to some of the people who tend to like neo-progressive rock. Overall, this is a good-quality production from start to finish, and one that should have a much broader appeal than most solo efforts crafted by a guitarist going solo.
The full review is up at progressor.net
Review of NitM from Fire of Unknown Origin
By Dave on Tuesday, May 24th 2011 9:33 pm
The review excerpt below is from a relatively new webzine/review site by Raffaella Berry. While the site is new, Raffaella isn't new to the prog scene having written reviews at other outfits for years. Last month she wrote a really thoughtful piece on the really-sad-horrible-no-good cancellation of NEARfest.
Anyway here are some of her thoughts on my little cd.
With superb production values and sterling sound quality, Notes in the Margin is indeed an excellent release, worthy of the attention of even the more demanding prog listeners. It is a pity that – like most studio-only projects – it will probably flow under the radar of many fans in favour of more extensively publicized albums. A labour of love in every sense of the term, classy and literate yet full of endearing warmth, this is a must for everyone who loves melodic, guitar-oriented progressive rock. It would be a boon if, one day, Dave managed to put a band together and perform his music on stage, in spite of all the well-documented difficulties that plague those artists looking for live outlets for their work.
click here for the full review
Which segues nicely to our next subject. Now that the shoulder is functional enough to play I've been jamming with a local bass player and drummer and collaborating online with a keyboard player who also lives in the area. Is it the start of a new band? I'm not sure yet. But it has been really great for putting me in a creative mindset. In about a month I have more than a half dozen different pieces in progress as well as collaborating on a couple of pieces by the keyboard player.
Also I'm working up some guitar tracks for Gino Foti's next solo project.
Finally a quick medical update. I had another followup appointment about a month ago. I'm apparently healing remarkably well, but have to be patient. The soreness, stiffness, and general weakness is expected to persist for another 4-6 months. But the doctor says by the one year anniversary of the fall I should be back to normal.
More end of year accolades for Notes in the Margin
By Dave on Saturday, January 1st 2011 3:28 pm
NitM comes in at #4 on Rickter Scale's Top 40 countdown of the best albums of 2010. The show airs on Delicious Agony Radio this Tuesday, January 4 from 12-3 PM EST.
And if that weren't enough it has also been nominated for Best Foreign Record of 2010 by the Italian site Prog Awards!
Notes in the Margin Makes Top 10 Prog CDs of 2010
By Dave on Tuesday, December 21st 2010 6:32 pm
USA Progressive Music has rated "Notes in the Margin" the 7th best prog album of 2010. It is of course quite an honor to be associated with so many really talented artists. Many thanks to the USA Progressive Music staff for their consideration.
Review of NitM from USA Progressive Music
By Dave on Saturday, November 20th 2010 3:18 pm
Erik Pseja writes:
As the listener finishes consuming the album, all that will be left are scattered crumbs, a warm, full feeling, and the knowledge that this particular sandwich is destined to become one of your favorite comfort foods. Thank you, chef Kulju.
Read the entire review at USA Progressive Music.
The review uses a lot culinary imagery. Luckily I did better than the "Shark Sandwich" review from This is Spinal Tap.
Progression Magazine's 15/16 rating review of NITM
By Dave on Sunday, October 3rd 2010 5:49 pm
Rick Tvedt reviews Notes in the Margin in the new issue (Autumn 2010) of Progression Magazine.
Known primarily for instrumental prog with his band Electrum, Dave Kulju presents his second solo album, which thematically affirms the common man's struggle to realize his artistic vision amidst the setbacks of everyday life. The title refers to that struggle but also to the literary influences inspiring each track.
Opening instrumental "Skating on Europa" (Arthur C. Clarke) is a tour-de-force, cued from an indecipherable otherworldly phone message. Porcupine Tree motifs abound, especially the Richard Barbiere-like keyboards, though Kulju successfully melds his many influences into something uniquely identifiable.
The nearly 30-minute epic "A Poet's Talespin" is very well conceived, and the brilliant adaptation of two poems by Amanda Joy (sung by Annie Oya) make Kulju's first foray into lyrical matter a triumph. Equally adept at guitar and keyboards, Dave excels at transitioning between the two.
Elsewhere, "Get the Hell Off My Lawn" (book on organic lawn care) exhibits symphonic rock grandeur, while "Know Again" (Greek Tragedy) is another excellent instrumental.
Notes in the Margin is a labor of love that is surprisingly strong and bears repeated, joyous listening.
- Rick Tvedt