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Believe - The Warmest Sun In Winter CD (album) cover

THE WARMEST SUN IN WINTER

Believe

 

Neo-Prog

3.71 | 102 ratings

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kenethlevine
Special Collaborator
Prog-Folk Team
2 stars While MIREK GIL is the unquestioned leader of BELIEVE, it seems to me that, where violinist Satomi goes so goes "Believe". Unfortunately, she is absent for all but a few sublime moments on "The Warmest Sun in Winter". To be honest, I'm not sure the string-less material is strong enough to be saved by her presence in any case.

I first heard most of these tracks at ROSfest in Gettysburg, PA earlier this year, and while I generally enjoyed the "sound" and the young look of their vocalist, I found that the composition and arrangements had become predictable. Let's see, start with a slow intro and bring in Wróblewski's warble for a fairly standard low energy verse-chorus pattern that overstays its welcome, and top it off with another Gil solo in precisely the same timbre as the last. Speaking of choruses, do you remember "Yesterday is a Friend"? There the choruses shimmered and, along with Satomi, electrified each tune. Keyboards were scarce but there was such a crispness to the soundscapes, one sorely lacking here, with a much thicker, actually viscous keyboard layering, and generally dreary choruses absent of any of the urgency we have grown to appreciate. If you are going to utilize conventional structures, you need a few hooks.

The main exception to the above is "Please Go Home", which should have been the warning sign at the concert, being the only new piece that really resonated with me. A concise statement of nerve wracking euphoria, it's perhaps the band's finest moment among many, and Satomi's accompaniment only adds to the brilliance.

This is essentially the same skilled band but they seem to have "settled" for the first time. As a result, while a warm sunny glow can be felt here and there, there's not enough of the old fire, especially not where it's needed.

kenethlevine | 2/5 |

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