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Diagonal es un periodico de información alternativa
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[Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo · 2014]
1. Projector 7
3. Projector 7 (Stewie Tantrum Remix)
Review by Progrussia — Riverside's Memories in my head in only an EP with three songs totaling little more than 30 minutes. But it feels like a complete
album. A wholesome artistic statement, what to me is a definition of an album, as opposed to, you know, a bunch of songs.
Here Riverside show their atmospheric side. Songs feature lots of feedback, fade-outs, hypnotic bass lines and melancholic singing.
But songs also have a rocking core, usually around 4-5 minutes, quite hummable, too.
If you are a fan of their more metallic previous album, ADHD, you might think that Riverside has gone the opposite direction. But
don't despair, their follow-up, Shrine of New Generation Slaves, is a balance between the two approaches.
Review by HolyMoly — This album functions as part live album, part outtakes compilation. Since it is now available only
as part of a package deal with Swans' debut LP "Filth" (a 2 CD reissue on Young God Records, led by
Swans leader M. Gira), there is a tendency to think of it as an afterthought, or at least secondary
to the "proper" albums in the vast Swans discography. However, for me anyway, this album does a
better job than any other of capturing the magic of the early Swans, and if "The Seer" is my clear
favorite album from the "new" Swans, then this album is my clear favorite from the "old" Swans.
But how can Odds and Sods be better than Quadrophenia? It may be a purely personal
thing for me, but this album is compiled in such a way that it knocks you on your behind and then
proceeds to kick you in the stomach until you can't take it anymore, and then it kicks you some more
until you're simply numb and don't care anymore. Swans studio albums from the same era at least
have some sense of craft and pacing -- this album disregards any notion of pacing and offers
highlight after highlight, each punishment more brutal than the last. Sounds like loads of fun,
Many of these tracks are alternate, re-named, or live versions of songs from the early albums
Filth and Cop,. but almost without exception, the versions are more powerful and
punishing, albeit more sloppy and with murkier sound quality. The opener "I'll Cry for You" is
clearly a studio recording (and a great one), but most of the rest seems to be compiled from live
shows. But it feels as if the most primal moments of a dozen different Swans shows were all
documented in one place, making it a dream live album of sorts. I don't want to go track by track
here, because I would just say the same thing about each track -- it's monotonous, horrific,
grinding, so overdriven that the CD almost strains to capture the volume of sound. I've often
described their sound as the sound of an electric guitar and bass being thrown against a brick wall.
Lots of pounding, lots of screaming, the unfiltered rage of a man trying by brute force to
understand this beautiful/ugly world we live in, by the only means he has left: spilling out his
last remains of pure animal energy.
If you, like I, can find the beauty behind such musical strategies (and it is very tightly
structured and composed, make no mistake), then the early Swans are for you. If my description
repulses you, then you can turn back now, and I will have done my job.
Review by tired_feet — 11 months since the last album, and Motorpsycho have no intention of resting on their
Behind The Sun can be described as a continuation of Still Life With Eggplant, only with a
bigger focus on songwriting and arrangements. Behind The Sun contains 9 songs in 60
mins, and has a lot of stylistic diversity (maybe a little too much, actually)
The record starts off in awesome fashion with Cloudwalker and Ghost. The former having a
really great lead riff accompanied by subtle mellotron. There's also an awesome bridge in
there and a nice instrumental buildup to the last chorus. Ghost is a very mellow pastoral
thingy, where a mellotron/string arrangement carry the song along with a shivery vocal
delivery from Bent Sæther.
Individually, On A Plate is a good track. But its straightforward cock-rockish sound doesn't
really fit this album, IMO. The Promise is an uptempo rocker, but it's way more catchy,
complex and with a purpose. Great guitar-solo too. Kvæstor (incl. Where Greyhounds Dare)
is an instrumental jam. It reminds me a bit of Whip That Ghost from Let Them Eat Cake
(2000), but this one's way heavier and more complex (even the subtle Iron Maiden
reference makes sense). The robotic strings in this one adds a nice touch.
Hell, part 4-6 is the longest one (12 mins) on this album. Starts off with Part 4: Traitor which
is kinda mellow and sets the main theme for this track. Part 5: The Tapestry is extremely
atmospheric and consists of a mellotron/acoustic guitar fog. Then a beautiful melody
rises from the fog before we return to the Traitor part briefly. Then Part 6: Swiss Cheese
Mountain starts with a heavy, slightly Eastern-sounding jam that culminates in Prog
Heaven. Great track!
Then another ballad, Entropy. This one is simply stunning! Hans Magnus Ryan takes lead
vocals on this one (blistering guitar-solo as well), and Fiske really makes his presence felt
here with some great guitar lines near the end. Beautiful melody, beautiful arrangement,
and my personal favorite on here!
The Magic & The Wonder (A Love Theme) is a bit similar to The Promise in being an
uptempo complex rocker. But this one has some great guitar themes in it as well.
Unfortunately for me, the album ends in chaotic fashion with Hell, Part 7: Victim Of Rock.
This one is quite over the top, coupling the Hallucifuge-riff from Little Lucid Moments with
the Hell, part 1-3 from the Eggplant. Then it turns really psychedelic as some kind of flanger-
effect is thrown on, and everything/everyone sounds as if they're playing in a snowstorm. It has potential to grow (it's already started!), but I think of it as a subpar way to end this album.
So I give this one 4 stars, but it's actually closer to approx. 4,4 or something. I did give 4
stars to the previous one as well, but that one's closer to like 3,7 or 3,8. A couple minor
misfires robs the top rating, but this is still a fantastic album with lots of progressive
elements that could satisfy a lot of people on here. Recommended listening!
Review by lazland — The Turn of a Friendly Card, a loose sort of concept about gambling, was released in 1980, sold well in America, and just about
dented the top 40 chart in the UK. It was the follow up to Eve, an album not, it is fair to say, universally critically appreciated.
This is, really, an album of two sides, one appreciably better than the other.
The first side is basically a collection of well crafted, well performed, and well sung pop rock songs, of which the easy highlight is
Time, with lovely vocals by the wonderful Eric Woolfson, which bears a passing resemblance to Floyd instrumentally, although only
passing. Of the remainder, veteran Lenny Zakatek sings on two pleasant enough tracks, one of which, Games People Play, was a
hit single, whilst Dave Terry, formerly of Elmer Gantry and the subject of a minor legal scandal when trying to tour as a bootleg
Fleetwood Mac, pops up on the pleasant opener May Be A Price To Pay. Basically, pleasant enough pop rock, without being
This changes somewhat with side two. Opener, The Gold Bug is a clever instrumental, with very nice jazzy sax supporting.
The main tour de force, however, is the title track, presented here as an epic track lasting over sixteen minutes, but is, in reality, five
distinct pieces of music welded (lovingly) into a single opus. It works on every level. The third movement, The Ace of Swords, is a
magnificent synth led instrumental that fairly races along, whilst avoiding the disco led beats of some of the first side work. The suite
also greatly benefits from the services of the two finest APP vocalists, Woolfson on the achingly beautiful Nothing Left To Lose, and,
for the remainder, the wonderful Chris Rainbow, whose voice I fell in love with when I first heard APP all those years ago. This suite
has all that was great about this project; wonderfully lush orchestration, thoughtful and intelligent lyrics, sung with genuine passion
and feeling, and some wonderful rock passages, perhaps best seen here with Ian Bairnson's passionate guitar burst at the close of
the fourth movement. The real highlight, though, are those vocals. They are to die for.
This is a difficult album to rate. It was, by no means, the worst that APP released, but neither was it the finest. The first side was
really only okay, fun to visit every couple of years, or so. Side two, though; that was something really rather special, so three stars
for this, a very worthy addition to the canon, and worth exploring if you enjoy melodic prog from one of the finest exponents of such
Review by SouthSideoftheSky — Hallelujah Anyway
Large Afternoon is the latest Greenslade album to date and likely to be their last album ever. It was
released in the year 2000, 25 years after the group's previous album Time And Tide. It thus constituted a
comeback of sorts (though Dave Greenslade did release some albums under his own name in the interim).
Large Afternoon often gets harsh criticism, but to my ears it is an album that is worthy of the band and
that fits in among (particularly the later of) the 70's albums. It is very true that not every track here is of the
desired quality, but I think it must be admitted that this was true also of previous albums.
In general, I appreciate the instrumental side of this album a lot more than the vocal side. Roughly, every
second track is an instrumental, starting with the opener Cakewalk, which is one of the strongest tracks
here together with On Suite, which features vocals. The weakest track is Hallelujah Anyway which
overstays its welcome, dragging along for more minutes than anyone could reasonably have wanted!
Certainly not among the band's best moments, and by no means essential. Yet, Large Afternoon is still a
decent album and a worthy addition to a collection that already holds Greenslade's 70's albums.
[Studio Album · 2014]
1. Sunsets And Silhouettes (5:33)
2. Line By Line (6:56)
3. Frame By Frame (4:20)
4. Really Serious Music (6:01)
5. Belong To Me (5:20)
6. Do Not Resuscitate (5:40)
7. If I Could (4:32)
8. Lost In Transit (5:15)
9. In My Head (6:21)
10. Bullet In Winter (7:09)
Total Time 57:09
Review by Matti — The Finnish group Plain Fade started recording their second album right after the release of the debut,
in 2005, drawing inspiration from the lakeside. Aurejärvi is one of the thousands of our lakes I don't
remember ever having heard of, but googling reveals that it locates in Northern parts of Pirkanmaa
region, not very far from the band's hometown Tampere. Lies, Sanctions and Cruise Missiles was a
dark-toned, melancholic work of Post-Rock (that I associated with the Belgian Battlestations), and on
this album the style comes closer to Ambient. The biggest difference is that whereas most of the
debut's tracks were rather long and included even violent shifts from calmness to edginess and back,
these ten tracks stay mostly in an average length and don't progress that much within themselves.
That makes it easy to tell right away which tracks are accessibly beautiful and which are a bit harder to
enjoy because of more dissonant sounds. Vocals are this time completely absent if I remember right.
All track titles seem to be names of specific locations on the lake. The main composer in the band is
the keyboard player Juho Koivuaho, but this music is based on improvisational sessions by the lake. I
think YouTube has one or two tracks from this album. Actually it's quite difficult to capture in words.
Here and there I felt some resemblance with the more ambientish parts of 666 by Aphrodite's Child, or
early Vangelis such as L'Apocalypse des Animaux. The mood is sort of introvert and thoughtful. There
may be no clear highlights that would stick to one's memory, instead the album works as a whole
continuum, letting plenty of space for inner images (of untouched nature above anything else, or is this
only a presumption evoked by the theme? Well, urban or upbeat this is not!), and it's completely up to
the listener how deeply (s)he is taken into that trip.
It's interesting to see that for the third album Antrhopogonia (2011) this group took a whole different
direction, teaming with a choir - singing in Ancient Greek! - to make a grandiose concept album. What
Review by Guillermo — For years I wanted to listen to this album. Well, I did it yesterday. MOGUL TRASH was a short-lived
band created by ex-Colosseum`s guitarist James Litherland with John Wetton and other very good
musicians, and they played together for about eighteen months between late 1969 and early 1971. In
an interview done some years ago with Wetton, he said that in this band there was a bit of conflict
about the musical direction of the band, with him being more in favour for the Progressive Rock
elements in the music and with Litherland more interested in playing Jazz and Rock arrangements, but
the horn players were more interested in the Funk elements of the music. This things, along with very
important problems with the manager, led to the split of the band. The horn players later joined the
AVERAGE WHITE BAND while Wetton joined FAMILY for two albums. It seems that Wetton was
somewhat impatient to be the front man and lead singer in a band, so he also didn`t last for a very
long time with FAMILY and he became in 1972 the lead singer and bassist with KING CRIMSON, on
which band he also became one of the main composers, a thing that he also wanted to do a lot. But in
MOGUL TRASH he was mostly a backing singer and a very good and heavy bassist. In fact, in this
album the lead singer and main composer was Litherland, but as a whole this band sounded very well,
in my opinion, with some very heavy arrangements and playing, sounding like the album was really
recorded "live in the studio" (with a few notable guitar overdubs), with a lot of freedom but fortunately
no mistakes can be listened in the final product. Even if this happened, Litherland in another interview
said that recording engineer Eddie Offord edited the tracks and that the band liked the results very
well. It is similar in some ways to Colosseum in musical style, something that is very obvious due to
Litherland`s presence. But I think that a line-up like this (a guitar-bass-drums trio plus a horn section
but no keyboards) was a bit unusual combination of sounds. Producer Brian Auger played a bit of
piano on one track and Litherland said in that interview that Auger gave to them a lot of freedom to
record in this album. Well. The album as a whole sounds a bit dated, but it is very good
anyway.Maybe there are some influences from bands like BLOOD, SWEAT AND TEARS and
CHICAGO, but the music is heavier and more "raw", in my opinion. Litherland is a very good guitarist
and lead singer.
Review by ScarRitual — Both parts of the English Electric Saga were masterpieces of prog. Combining just the right amounts of classical and modern
eclectic prog. This combined work is a mammoth of an album that is absolutely essential in every collection of discerning music
lovers, let alone prog enthusiasts. Musicianship is impeccable throughout but it's the songwriting that always occupies center
stage. You simply feel not a note is wasted, that every choice made was according to the needs of the songs. Listen to it and
prepare to be astonished. To me this is the most important musical statement made in the realm of progin the last 20 years.
Review by Warthur — This final part of the "Holidays in Zeeland" trilogy captures Marillion's Sunday night set from the
2011 Marillion Weekend in Holland. As usual with their Marillion Weekend gigs, the band like
to give each evening its own strange spin rather than playing "just another gig", so this time
around they decided to take a democratic approach to the setlist; the audience members were
all issued with glowsticks, which they were asked to wave in their air at certain points of the
evening to choose which song they'd like to hear next.
Fiendishly, the band come up with some really tough choices for the fans here and there, with
the crowd genuinely split at some points - for instance, they end up playing both Easter and
The Great Escape by popular demand - and the gig as a whole is a lively, fun affair with the
band in a playful mood. (Perhaps the funniest part comes towards the start, when H is
explaining that because the crowd will be choosing between preselected pairs of songs they
won't be able to vote for Grendel - at which point Steven Rothery starts teasing the crowd with
the haunting opening guitar melody from that very song!)
It isn't the tightest gig Marillion have ever performed - but then, due to the conceit it was never
going to be - but a solid set nonetheless.
Review by Neu!mann — This posthumous live album from the fallen supergroup was recorded in Japan, which in retrospect
makes perfect sense, as the music showed John Wetton well on his way toward the chart-topping
entropy of ASIA.
On stage, in front of an adoring crowd, the trio was admirably tight and professional, but I hear no
passion whatsoever for the music being played. A moot point, since there isn't any, even in the two
new songs: the lively but mechanical title track (by default one of the better selections here), and the
entirely too banal "As Long As You Want Me Here", a transparent bid for a slice of the singles market.
The latter actually fades out over the final chorus (in a live concert?), anticipating a radio edit that
Fans might be curious to hear how the trio sounded playing material from the original quartet...not very
different, as it turns out. And Eddie Jobson's lightning synth runs are no substitute for Allan
Holdsworth's guitar. Also: what's up with all the obviously pre-recorded background harmonies? Was
John Wetton cloned in a secret Honshu lab before the tour? And are there other unfair overdubs
hidden in the mix?
In the end the album succeeds in showing how much Wetton had forgotten from his years in KING
CRIMSON, a band that rarely failed to honor the integrity of a live performance (except, ironically,
when Jobson himself was drafted to 'fix' some violin parts on the "USA" tapes). If this was where the
bass player saw his career heading at the end of the 1970s, Fripp was wise to kill the Crimson King
when he did.
Review by Neu!mann — The return of Miles Davis to the public spotlight in the early 1980s, after falling off the map for almost
six years, saw the Fusion beast of the mid '70s finally tamed and on a tighter stylistic leash. The
trumpet player who took the stage in the summer and autumn of 1981 was a more easy-on-the-ears
bandleader compared to the "seriously brutal artist" of the earlier decade (quoting guitarist and fan
Carlos Santana). History, failing health, and creative fatigue had finally caught up to the aging Davis, a
trendsetting pioneer reduced to following in the footsteps of his own protégés, notably aping the milder
Jazz Rock fusions of WEATHER REPORT.
And yet his playing seems oddly stronger here than it was in those frantic, drug-fueled gigs caught on
the "Agharta / Pangaea" and "Dark Magus" albums. And his new back-up band was solid, if nowhere
near as incandescent or experimental as the thermonuclear ensembles of the middle '70s. Drummer
Al Foster was the only remaining musician in the reconfigured line-up, now paired with twenty-two
year old bassist Marcus Miller, soon to become a fixture on Davis albums and a stabilizing factor in his
mentor's professional life.
The set-list from these concerts, recorded in Tokyo and the eastern U.S. seaboard, was more
pleasantly jam-oriented than the often pyrotechnic improvisations of earlier bands, the difference
immediately apparent in the late-career signature melody "Jean-Pierre" (included twice in this set).
Needless to say, the simple, childlike song is a long way from the elegant sophistication of "So What",
but it's a catchy little tune, and oddly playful coming from such an uncompromising musical agitator.
Of course in 1982 we should have been grateful to hear anything at all from the aging and reclusive
legend. So how come the album has never (to date) been released on CD in North America? Never
mind the cultural insult; in purely commercial terms the oversight makes little sense, although it might
explain why so many fans, this relative newbie included, were hardly aware the album even existed.
Don't expect a masterpiece, but on its own terms it works surprisingly well, far better than some of the
Miles Davis studio albums from the same period.
Review by GruvanDahlman — For me ELP was always one of the most inconsistent and uneven of the great prog bands of
the 70's. Their albums seemed marred and at times unfocused, blending greatness with
fillers. Often these fillers appear to have been great fun recording in the studio. A great
laugh for all involved but less fun for people like me, having to bear through it or skipping
songs, thus breaking the spell.
Their first album, however, is interesting in many ways. First off it is sort of crude and raw,
bringing forth a musical concoction based on distorted organ, heavy bass and thumping
drums. One can easily see how the early phases of prog developed through the adaptation
of heavy and hard rock of the late 60's, paving the way for ever more sophistication further
into the decade.
Secondly I find the first album to be the most consistent. The presence of classical
influences are there but first and foremost it is an album of heavy, menacing and powerful
prog performed on organ, bass and drums. Magnificent! Especially since I am a great fan of
the hammond organ.
The first track, The barbarian, hits you right in the face with it's distorted bass and rolls you
over, feeling like you've been hit by a train. The second track is a marvellous, multi-part
piece called Take a pebble. It seems to have been a live favorite and I can understand why.
Very atmospheric and provides a great example of early prog's ability and willingness to
expand on musical structure. Knife-edge is similar to The barbarian. It is a hard rock piece.
Very heavy and certainly one of my favorites. The three fates is the track where ELP's
fascination for classical music comes to the fore. It is a complex, daring piece which opens
up with a majestic organ. The track Tank showcases Carl Palmer's amazing drum skills.
The album closes with the ballad Lucky man. A nice song, deliverd with emotion and
All in all ELP's first album is a starting point for what is to come later on. It is quite raw but
not without sophistication and wealth of music. On this album the focus and concistency is
never broken. The magic is there throughout, making it, simply, their best album, although
not consisting of their all time best tracks, like Tarkus for instance. A great place to start and
certainly a great way to end the day.
Review by Gatot — It's a wonderfully crafted neo-prog album!
Comedy of Errors is not a new name for me but ...honestly I only knew this album very late or
roughly around a month ago. It blew me away at first spin and I kept playing the album over
and over with no sense or indication of getting bored with the music. Yes, it's a pure neo
prog music they play here in this album and the music is very close with what Pendragon
and not quite close with Marillion. It's really mind boggling from start to end. The opening
track "Fanfare For The Broken Hearted" (9:06) starts off beautifully with powerful vocal of Joe
Cairney and its ambient musical background in neoprog typical flow. There are no dynamic
punch throughout the song but for sure there are beautifully crafted segments and transitions
presented by the band from start to end especially with its inventive keyboard effects as well
as thinly mixed guitar work. Vocal is the dominating factor in this track even though it is
backed up beautifully with great composition. The guitar solo is really stunning and mixed
softly in the music. It's a very cool opening track. really!
The next track "Something She Said" (7:17) continues with a kind of Van der Graaf
Generator style but composed with simpler one so that it can be accepted by most music
buffs. Again, the keyboard played by Jim Johnston plays significant role to shape up what an
excellent compositions are - he sometimes maneuvers through a piano work to augment
vocal line which still holds an important role. The semi staccato style combined with
inventive keyboard work at the background have made the song sounds even wonderful
and makes me willing to replay the song for the sake of ultimate enjoyment. Oh man ... I love
the keyboard work as well as stunning guitar solo.
" In A Lifetime" provides me like a break with a nice opening of ambient keyboard and
Hackettian guitar - but then the music provides a dynamic punch followed with a powerful
vocal line that reminds me to Pendragon music. There are simple riffs as the music goes
accompanying the vocal in relatively medium tempo style. There are nice breaks and
transition pieces in this relatively short track.
"Going For A Song" starts off with guitar fills that reminds me to the style of Hackett followed
with vocal line - makes the music flows in ambient style. The intro part is nice and it is a
reminiscent of Genesis music. As the music moves into complex arrangements, the
keyboard takes full responsibility to provide the rhythm section altogether with guitar work to
accompany vocal line. Again I enjoy the intertwining roles of guitar and keyboard that are
wonderfully played throughout the interlude parts. Mark Spalding is an excellent guitarist.
"Merry Dance" is relatively a short track but it has a very nice grooves and rhythm section
that provide an excellent platform for the vocal to shape an overall melody line. The
keyboard solo is also stunning during the transition pieces. Guitar is played differently right
here. There are keyboard work that sounds like a mellotron at the background that makes
the song like a vintage symphonic prog music. It's a nice song.
"The Cause" starts with a blast of music that suddenly goes silent followed with an ambient
music comprises soft keyboard work and Floydian guitar solo. The vocal enters in the vein of
Pendragon singing style. The vocalist has a great voce as well as excellent accentuation
throughout the song. "They separate religion ...they separate the schools" he sings nicely. I
think his singing style is really cool throughout this song especially when it is then followed
with great guitar solo and nice keyboard at background. There are parts with a bit complex in
terms of arrangements where the tempo suddenly change into a faster one with powerful
singing, inventive keyboard work and excellent guitar riffs. The keyboard solo that follows is
really cool. This might be the best track from this wonderfully crafted album! The bass player
also given a chance to perform his solo as transition to a long stunning guitar solo (a bit raw
than previous solo in previous tracks - but it's really cool!(.
I am not gonna review all other remaining tracks but for sure this is a masterpiece neoprog
album one should have. The fans of symphonic prog would also love this album as well.
Keep on proggin' ...!
Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW
Review by Gatot —
As far this EP of Trans-Siberian Orchestra, I mostly enjoy the first two instrumental tracks. The
first one "Winter Palace" 03:39 is really good for any event to play this as setting the stage song
like excerpts from Firebird Suite in the case of Yes concert. The orchestra is really cool
especially backed with the kind of metal music even though it's not really a metal one. The
piano work is cool even though quite simple. It continues nicely with "Dreams of Fireflies" which
is another good instrumental as well. The other three tracks with vocal line are actually not
quite prog in nature. "I Had a Memory" features inviting vocalist Erika Jerry. Tim Hockenberry
takes the the vocal line on `Someday'. So, out the total five tracks only the first two that contains
sorts of prog elements. It's not bad EP at all.
Review by b_olariu — The second album saw the light after 3 years in 2007 and is named Dorothy, with story based upon
the girl from Wizard of Oz. Well, to me this second effort is definetly better in any way over the
debut, the music is much better constructed, the arrangements are more consistent and intresting,
and the vocalist is more confident on his vocal posibilities. This time Moonlight Comedy really
manage to create something worth investigating in prog metal field, no more so much DT similarities,
even are obvious here and there, some Symphony X duels between keyboards and guitars. Fiorletta is
awesome guitarist, had many time signature, lots of complicated riffs and solos, as must have a prog
metal album. Germani did a great job here, his voice is fiting into this type of music very well,
nice voice, Solar Eclipse or Fallin under are excellent pieces. All in all a very worthy afair,
definetly fans of prog metal must discover this band and special this album. A nice art work and
over all package. 4 stars.
Review by b_olariu — Moonlight Comedy is a prog metal band from Italy who released so far two albums, well recived by
fans of the genre and aswell by media. The band was formed in 1998 by excellent guitarist Simone
Fiorletta and the music offered doesn't differ much from DT school. First offer was released in 2004
named The life inside and is pretty much ok most of the time for a debut by a young band. Even the
music is not original at all, the members can really handle the instruments and creating some quite
good instrumental arrangements. There are lots of keyboards melted with heavy riffs but all under a
specific romantic italian atmosphere, a thing that is even better on their next album. All pieces
stands as good, no groundbreaking moments but pleasent. For fans of DT, Empty Tremor, Vanden Plas,
Madsword and alike. 3 stars
Review by GruvanDahlman — At long last I got around to actually listen to these much raved about albums. Their English
Electric albums being, as far as reviews go, brilliant pieces of music. Intrigued but
somewhat sceptic I listened casually in short stabs, not really focusing on what actually
went on in there.
I suppose I at first felt a bit reluctant due to what I perceived as a tad too poppy approach.
No, there is nothing wrong with a bit of pop in prog. On the contrary, actually. However
humble and receptive I proclaim myself to be, I did think, at first, that pop was the overall
dominating style of music and that was not to my liking. But then I had barely listened.
This box contains the two full albums of English Electric, as you probably know already. The
full body of the work plus a newly recorded song, "Make some noise". As many have stated
already, that song is not their greatest work. It certainly isn't a favorite of mine, I can tell you.
From a pure art perspective the box is beautifully made. It's black cover with the rusty
emblem on the front is magnificent. The box is constructed as a book, containing details
about the recordings, lyrics and the history behind it all. It is, for sure, a beautiful box and
packed with amazing photos and stories. Really stunning.
The music, then? The packaging is all very well but what about the music? That is all that
matters in the end, no matter how well you package it. Forget what I wrote about this being
pop. I mean, it is. In some respects, but it is pure prog. Big Big Train possess a pop
sensibility that matches anything the big bands of the 70's and 80's could muster. Genesis,
Yes, Marillion... They all had that feeling for writing complex yet (at times) accessible and
melodic pieces of music within the framework of prog. That is exactly what BBT does. And in
a glorious way, at that. Now, after really having listened to the music, I can tell you it wasn't
all love love at first (aural) sight. It came to me, after a while.
The first track I really came to grips with was "East coast racer", the longest epic of the entire
duo of English electric. It is a fantastic work of art, the entire 15.45 minutes of it's duration. I
really came to terms with the whole album by way of examining the second part of the saga
that is English electric. "Worked out" is brilliant, as is "The lovers" with it's stabs of electric
piano (played JUST the right way, the way that makes me shiver), the wonderfully melodic
"Leopards" and so on. The songs unfolded before my eyes, revealing a kingdom and a
plethora of moods and progressive brilliance. After this brekthrough, which came rather
quickly I must add, my defences were dismantled and all of my soul lay bare for the invasion
of BBT:s exquisite brand of music. Influences ranges from The Kinks, by way of Genesis
and the 70's style of prog into the 80's and combines folk, prog, pop into a sense of
timelessness that is overpowering and thrilling. (There is even traces of The Byrds in the
This box, containing the two parts of English electric, is, I think, quite the essential part of
any prog collection, if you are into melodic, utterly british (an essential part of their music
and a part I love more than anything) and carefully constructed music. It is so well conceived
throughout and full of great harmonies, musical intricacy and grandeur, really, that it is hard
to not being, at least, smitten by it's honesty and sincerity. I feel overwhelmed and actually
very grateful to BBT for putting so much love and energy into this project, allowing me to
submerge myself into genial music as this.
In conclusion, this is a brilliant collection of two of the most brilliant pieces of prog made in
contemporary times. Maybe not breaking new ground (then again, not many do) but they
claim a musical territory that is genuine and personal. A claim of musical territory named
Big Big Train, where their own brand of prog ecology is flourishing and reaching for the
heavens. I better stop now, before growing all soppy on you all.
Just a last word, give the music a serious listen. Really, do. I implore you.
Review by siLLy puPPy — Finally. After 35 years Ozzy, Geezer and Tony finally get together to release a much anticipated
album. Bill Ward opted out and Brad Wilk of Rage Against The Machine took the slot, so this isn't a
complete reunion but it really sounds like classic Sabbath. The band stayed as true as they could to
the classic 70s era and I have to say that I really like the results of the effort.
What we get here is retro SABBATH in all its glory. The production is up-to-date but the songs feel
like this album could have come out right after SABOTAGE and is by far more interesting than either
TECHNICAL ECSTASY or NEVER SAY DIE. There is no doubt that there is some blatant self-plagiarism
here. The very beginning riff sounds like the beginning riff of the very first album from 1970. The
song "Zeitgeist" is a clear reference to "Planet Caravan" from PARANOID. If you listen throughout
the album different parts will remind you of older songs.
A recycled album maybe but one that I really enjoy hearing and never really expected would be
released after the gazillion attempts over the years to make this happen. Despite this not being a
full reunion and also in no way in competition to replace any of the classics as a favorite album, I
still find this a very satisfying listen. I can get behind this retro sound only because this is
like a new beginning. If they decide to begin releasing new albums I really hope they don't stagnate
trying to recreate the past and move on into some newer frontiers. 3.5 rounded up