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Mostly Autumn - Heart Full Of Sky CD (album) cover


Mostly Autumn


Prog Folk

3.48 | 100 ratings

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Theo Verstrael
3 stars What a disappointment 'Storms over still water' was. Would this great band find their direction again and avoid making too loud rocking mediocre songs and replace it with their unique Celtic and Floydian music? That was the question I asked myself firmly when I laid my hand on their new album 'Heart full of sky'. The first impression was not too good; the drawing on the cover is in the same vein as its predessor SOSW. But it is the music that counts and that is far better than the aforementioned album. Because the band really has tried to regain their unique style and that can be best illustrated by the fact that flautist Angela Goldthorpe can be heard on quite a few tracks again. Well done!!! Add the uileann pipes and the Floydian guitars, imagine the sweet voice of Heather Findlay and there you have that strange yet very attractive mix again.

But: there is something odd with this album.

For some reason I really can not understand why the band refuses to make full use of Findlays lead vocals. Brian Josh, a good (yet not great) guitarist and with Findlay the nucleus of MA, has clearly made a step back as a lead vocalist which was, in my opinion, a wise decision. He is not a bad singer but he isnīt near as good as Heather Findlay. But surprisingly he is replaced on two tracks by newcomer Chris Johnson on lead vocals, the new keyboard player. He turns out not to be a great vocalist either but he isnīt bad. But guys, you have Findlay so why looking further??? She can do the lead vocals on most songs so do it!

Looking at the songs it appears that they all tend to be longer than on SOSW which is a good thing. Most of the songs are rather low paced and the exceptions are, in my opinion, the worst songs. Especially ' Pocket watch' is a very, very bad choice: it seems to be a medium paced rock song with a simple chorus and not too attractive choruses. Just skip it all together, it brings you into a bad mood. Fortunately it is followed by some beautiful ballads like 'Blue light' and, on the second cd, 'Gaze' and ' Broken soldier' . In these songs MA proves that they can still write and play and still rank among the better bands this moment. The long tracks are good and typically MA, with guitar solos fading out. The album as a whole is far better than SOSW but it isn't as good as their three first albums. Therefore I would like to give them 3,5 stars but because of 'Pocket watch' it is 3 stars.

Originally it was meant to have this limited 2CD edition available only by pre-order. That could mean that the band plans to get a single CD version in the regular stores. That would be too bad but if they succeed in making the right selection that can turn out as a really great cd. In the meantime I'll enjoy these two cd's, apart from that horrible rock song....

Theo Verstrael | 3/5 |


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