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The Flower Kings - Desolation Rose CD (album) cover


The Flower Kings


Symphonic Prog

3.99 | 531 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Released only a year after their triumphant comeback album Banks of Eden, 2013's Desolation Rose once again showcases The Flower Kings' distinct brand of progressive rock in full force. By these Swedes' standards, Desolation Rose is a fairly short album (clocking in at less than an hour without the bonus disc), but it still manages to deliver everything that we've come to expect from The Flower Kings. Although this can act as a double-edged sword (personally, I think it'd be interesting to hear Roine and company tinker with their sound a little bit more at this stage in the game), Desolation Rose is still a mightily strong observation that demonstrates why The Flower Kings are so highly regarded by progressive rock fans.

With its longest song at 'only' thirteen minutes, Desolation Rose places a stronger emphasis on short compositions than many of the band's other records, but from a stylistic standpoint, not much has changed. The band's quirky, and even heavy at times, approach to symphonic prog sounds like the result of Frank Zappa and Ritchie Blackmore recording an album with Yes, and if that sounds appealing to you, Desolation Rose will be a blast to listen to. Tracks like "Tower One" and "Desolation Road" stand out as highlights to my ears, and the bonus CD also contains a few great tracks like "Runaway Train" and the beautiful instrumental "Burning Spears".

As one would expect from The Flower Kings, the musicianship and production are both stunning on Desolation Rose, and although it doesn't quite do enough to stand out as one of the band's most noteworthy albums, the quality is high enough to warrant a strong recommendation. It's great to hear one of the best Swedish prog bands regularly releasing albums once again!

J-Man | 4/5 |


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