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The Gift - Awake And Dreaming CD (album) cover

AWAKE AND DREAMING

The Gift

 

Symphonic Prog

3.98 | 55 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

erik neuteboom
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Here is a stunning debut CD by the UK band The Gift, what an incredible level for a new band!

The album Awake & Dreaming has a running time of 70 minutes and contains two epic compositions, separated into 19 songs in total. Despite the long running time and many songs, the music doesn't fail to generate excitement for one single second. In contrary, it is loaded with strongly build-up songs featuring lots of spectacular breaks (especially the second part of this CD) with sensational keyboardwork and excellent, often powerful guitarplay. The Gift sounds melodic and accessible but the compositions are varied and elaborate, the band changes very flowing from mellow with twanging 12-guitars to harder-edged and bombastic outbursts with propulsive, often fat sounding guitar riffs and lush keyboards. I am delighted about the way The Gift blends 'classical Seventies symphonic prog' (obvious Genesis echoes) and some neo-prog (like early Marillion) with fresh ideas and a modern sound. The vocals are strong with a wide range but I want to give special attention to the keyboard player (from spacey and soaring to classical orchestrations and flashy synthesizer flights) and the guitarist (from howling runs to heavy - and even prog metal guitar riffs or fiery wah-wah drenched soli). If you have the idea that the current prog has nothing to offer, I am sure The Gift will change your mind, what an excellent debut CD!

My rating is 3,5 stars but I have to choose between 3 and 4 stars according to the Prog Archives guidelines so eventually it becomes 4 stars. Highly recommended to especially symphonic - and neo-prog aficionados!

erik neuteboom | 4/5 |

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