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Spock's Beard - Snow CD (album) cover


Spock's Beard


Symphonic Prog

3.86 | 741 ratings

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Jim Garten
Special Collaborator
Retired Admin & Razor Guru
3 stars The parallels between this and Genesis's 'Lamb Lies Down' are obvious - increasingly popular progressive rock band releases double concept album dealing with life's choices, set in New York just before lead vocalist / band "leader" leaves group.

That to one side, Spocks Beard have never been ones to hide their influences, rather they prefer to wear them on their sleeves for all to see - this is due in no small part to the hugely talented Ryo Okumoto's finely crafted, yet shamelessly derivative keyboard lines (still, it's nice to hear the combination of Hammond B3 and Mellotron played this well on a 21st century album).

'Made Alive/Overture' opens proceedings, and bodes well for what is to come, yet 'Stranger In A Strange Land' reminded me (in its opening) of Bon Jovi (a combination of Morse's voice, and the slide acoustic guitar, I guess). From here on, the album gathers pace, garnering influences from bands as far diverse as Gentle Giant to of all people, Alice Cooper - I kid you not - listen to the chorus of The Devil's Got My Throat next to Alice's late '80s albums, and you'll see what I mean. I'll not go into a deep analysis of each track, as to be honest, it isn't a particularly deep concept - country boy goes to New York, has a few ups & downs, finds redemption, huzzah!

Notwithstanding the above, the playing (as you would expect with SB) is high quality throughout, but the shallowness of the concept itself is unlikely to keep you completely riveted for long.

In short, a good prog rock album for the car - entertaining, but not challenging, and you can even sing along in places.

Jim Garten | 3/5 |


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