Thursday, June 10, 2021

Into the Woods By Douglas Morton & Russ Jones


Into the Woods


Douglas Morton & Russ Jones

Written by

Steve Sheppard


I have long been a fan of melodic and reflective flute performances, so as I sit to review this outstanding work by Douglas Morton and Russ Jones entitled Into The Woods, simply put I am in musical heaven and honoured to be able to dive in deep with regard to this chart topping album, as combined with the flute are some of the most magical moments a keyboard has possibly ever created in this genre too.

The opening piece is utterly spell binding and called To the Caves, this could be where the lair of the bear may lie, and the powerful energy that flows from this quite breath taking performances could certainly suggest so. This is a multi-instrumental moment of sublime genius, the key boards add such a vast layer and texture to the proceedings here on this beautiful starting piece.

A haunting flute calls to us from deep within the woods; a tribal beat can be heard in the distance… Divides is certainly a scene setting gift that is vibrant yet controlled. The flute of Russ Jones grants us an audience to a sacred moment of musical magic that stands at the cross roads of all there is, and will be; a mysterious and masterful performance that brings a nice level of ambience into the proceedings as well.

We now move onward and further along the path, until we reach the track Under the Canopy, the hovering intensity here describes for me the vast realm of the woodlands we sit within, the flute of Jones instructs the very energies of this realm to pay heed, whilst the keyboards of Morton manifest a never ending dimension of colour and textures in this deep yet moving opus.

A symbiotic partnership between Morton and Jones coalesces further on this next offering entitled Morning Fog, a wonderful subject to write music about, and one that has given my muse a few ideas for further projects. The stillness created here is crafted genius; layer upon layer is built here, and with great feeling too, until a veritable tapestry of tone is manifested.

The fluency of Steaming Rivers is abundant in brilliance; Douglas Morton’s crafted methodology here on keyboards almost creates a John Carpenter styled moment, Assault on Prescient 13 mood, to the early textures of this track, whilst Russ Jones and his flute takes the offering to the next level with a mournful, but powerful performance.

The curiously entitled Unrest, To Rest is upon us next; here we have a sublime intensity that seems to drift from one corner of the woodland to the other. The synths here are so creative and descriptive, that one could be watching a lone flute performer standing by a vast Oak, as the sunrise burns away the early morning fog, a simply stunning reverie indeed.

The penultimate track is in fact the title header and of course called Into the Woods. Harmonic in structure, with an elevated sense of energy and intent, this incredible arrangement is enough to light up an entire valley with its powerful tones and imploring musical narrative; its compositions like this that make title tracks truly special.

We are gifted one more song to take with us on our journey and it is entitled Canyon Deep, from the burning hot midday sun, these wastelands provide us with a natural area to hide from its glory, while creators messenger (the eagle), flies over head and cries its message to us below. From Canyon Deep, these are my musings, gifted to me from this quite picturesque long form arrangement, one just shy of 10 minutes in length, but both performances here by the artists concerned, were utterly amazing in every context possible, and of course the perfect way to end the album.

Into the Woods by Douglas Morton & Russ Jones without doubt deserved to become a number one award winning album and will always be remembered so. This is crafted and intelligent musicianship, manifested from the heart of two sublime performers to you. Into the Woods will be known as a seminal body of work, created by two artists who clearly know their trade, and love it.


  1. Steve, many thanks for your impressions of our work. We're very humbled by your kind words.

  2. Thank you, so glad you enjoyed the review :-)