In search of - Alice and the Wonderland (2023)

'In Search Of' is a dynamic band formed by Michael Raitzin and Michelle Ray, an amazing father-daughter pair. In Search Of's music is a combination of rock, power pop, and hard rock, with ethnic sounds and instruments thrown in for good measure.

They made their initial impression with their debut track, "Alice," which debuted on May 19, 2023 and includes Michelle Ray, who has over 3.5 million Spotify plays. Her enchanting melodies have graced national commercials for prestigious brands, with her voice appearing in major feature films such as Garry Marshall's "Mother's Day" and Amazon Prime's "The Expanse," as well as stage performances such as Alanis Morissette's "Jagged Little Pill" and Green Day's "American Idiot."

'Alice and the Wonderland' is a real musical masterpiece inspired by the renowned adventure tale, Alice in Wonderland, and has fascinating melodies and evocative lyrics that transport the listener on a delightful voyage alongside a youthful Alice in Wonderland. Mark Boals, a noted vocalist known for his work with Yngwie Malmsteen and Ring Of Fire, contributes strong lead and background vocals.

The duo was motivated by their love of books and music to recount the narrative of the teen Alice's experiences within Wonderland in a Power Pop/Rock musical style. Following the "Intro" – a spoken word introduction to the story - Alice finds herself attending an "Engagement Party" against her choice. I appreciate the song's tempo and tone; it has a terrific and catchy, melodic chorus.

By the third track, Alice finds a way to return to Wonderland, where she is met by an "Ambush" orchestrated by the Knave of the Red Queen. The tone and guitars create a sense of menace. I like the riffs, the solo, and the alternation of female/male voices with an almost pop/disco chorus.

After rescuing herself, "Alice" (the first single, highly melodic and with a spot-on guitar solo) muses on her own life's marvels, which leads her to an out-of-control and in between prof and power metal "Tea Party" with the Mad Hatter, March Hare, and a Dormouse.

The story then introduces the terrifying "Jabberwocky," (amazing bass lines and stunning vocals on this one) and Alice finds herself in the Red Queen's Royal Court. "The Red Queen" (some Folk rock here!) kidnaps and plots to assassinate the Mad Hatter and the Dormouse, while Alice steals the "Vorpal Sword", the only weapon capable of killing the Jabberwocky. Great drumming during the verses and a peculiar arrangement for a very original song, with a superb solo section.

The Mad Hatter and the Dormouse attempt to incite a "Revolt" (very catchy chorus and "theatrical" verses) on the day of the execution. During the rebellion, the Mad Hatter and Dormouse flee the Red Queen's court, and everyone seeks sanctuary at the White Queen's palace. Alice is "Embattled," (another super catchy chorus and a beautiful vocal performance) as she prepares to combat the Jabberwocky on "Frabjous Day.", this one with some NWOBHM influences, a technical guitar solo and personally one of my favourite of the entire album. 

The ultimate fight is fought, and Alice triumphs by killing the terrible Jabberwocky. The ecstatic Mad Hatter performs his "Futerwacken Dance" and begs Alice if she may stay in Wonderland indefinitely. Another change of vibes for this one, very different (almost dance!) from the previous track but very interesting, entirely instrumental, apart from some spoken words. 

Alice bids "Farewell" to it all, stating that she has aspirations and plans to attend to, but pledges to return to her pals in Wonderland one day soon. The song is fast-paced, with very melodic vocals and some super inspired guitar solos. Another different and original track for a very peculiar concept album, amazingly written and performed, with two amazing singers and full of interesting details. Give it a go by clicking on the Spotify player below and don't forget to follow In Search Of' on social media as well.

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Giovanni Gagliano

Passionate about music I wrote my first article for "Given To Rock" in 2012, reaching now 30K global followers. I am also a musician, gigging around London.

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