Mirror Ball


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Shawn McNulty
Acrylic, Paint Skins and Eggshells on Canvas

Mirror Ball is an original abstract painting on canvas by visual artist Shawn McNulty. This painting is is 1.5″ deep, gallery wrapped with painted edges, and ready to hang with wire on the back.

Fun Fact: This painting was part of the Mirror virtual exhibition at the Rosalux Gallery during the COVID-19 pandemic. This is what had to say about it:

When I think of mirror, it brings to mind the artistic obsession with symmetry. Symmetry is powerful because it’s makes sense, and as humans, we need things to makes sense…now more than ever. This painting is a sensible arrangement of paint skins from palette knives, eggshells, and acrylic.

Using eggshells as an art medium was a fun experiment. The title comes from the Neil Young album Mirror Ball featuring Pearl Jam as the backing band.

Pearl Jam’s “Mirror Ball”: A Timeless Collaboration

“Mirror Ball,” the collaborative album between Pearl Jam and Neil Young, stands as a remarkable milestone in the world of rock music. Released in 1995, this album brings together the iconic grunge rockers and the legendary singer-songwriter Neil Young, creating a unique fusion of their distinctive musical styles. With its raw energy, memorable lyrics, and heartfelt performances, “Mirror Ball” has left an indelible mark on the world of rock music.

A Meeting of Legends:

The collaboration between Pearl Jam and Neil Young was a momentous event for both artists and their fans. Pearl Jam had already established themselves as one of the leading bands in the grunge movement, known for their passionate lyrics and powerful live performances. Neil Young, on the other hand, was a seasoned musician with a storied career, recognized for his poetic songwriting and soulful, heartfelt voice. The combination of these two musical forces was a recipe for something extraordinary.

Raw and Authentic:

“Mirror Ball” delivers an unpolished, raw sound that captures the essence of live rock and roll. The album feels like a jam session between old friends, with each track radiating spontaneity and vitality. The songs have a sense of immediacy, as if they were recorded in the heat of the moment, preserving the authenticity and energy of the performance.

Heartfelt Lyrics:

Both Pearl Jam and Neil Young are known for their emotionally charged lyrics, and “Mirror Ball” doesn’t disappoint in this regard. Songs like “I’m the Ocean” and “Peace and Love” explore themes of introspection, identity, and the human condition, delivered with poignant and heartfelt storytelling. The lyrics strike a chord with the listener, inviting them to reflect on life’s complexities.

Memorable Tracks:

The album is adorned with memorable tracks that have become fan favorites over the years. “I’m the Ocean” is a standout, driven by Neil Young’s raspy vocals and Pearl Jam’s impeccable instrumentation. “Downtown” is an anthemic rocker that showcases the band’s collective energy, while “Song X” is a sonic exploration that keeps the listener engaged with its evolving soundscape.

The Neil Young Effect:

Neil Young’s influence is palpable throughout “Mirror Ball.” His distinct songwriting style and emotive voice blend seamlessly with Pearl Jam’s powerful sound, resulting in a captivating synergy. It’s as if the two entities were always meant to collaborate, with each contributing to the other’s musical identity.

Live Album Feel:

One of the album’s most endearing qualities is its live album feel. It’s no surprise that many of the tracks from “Mirror Ball” were captured in the moment and later polished to maintain that raw energy. This lends a sense of immediacy to the music, making it feel like a front-row seat at a Pearl Jam and Neil Young concert.

Enduring Impact:

“Mirror Ball” has left an enduring impact on the world of rock music. It’s a testament to the power of collaboration and the transcendence of generational boundaries in the world of rock and roll. The album has influenced countless musicians and continues to be celebrated by fans of both Pearl Jam and Neil Young.

In conclusion, “Mirror Ball” is a testament to the timeless power of rock and roll. The collaboration between Pearl Jam and Neil Young created a fusion of two iconic musical forces that, to this day, resonates with listeners, capturing the raw energy and emotional depth of live performances. The album’s enduring impact solidifies its place in the pantheon of rock music, and it remains a cherished gem in the collections of music enthusiasts worldwide. Whether you’re a fan of Pearl Jam, Neil Young, or rock music in general, “Mirror Ball” is a must-listen that continues to shine brightly in the firmament of rock and roll history.


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