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Kalaban - Resistence is Useless  CD (album) cover

RESISTENCE IS USELESS

Kalaban

 

Symphonic Prog

3.57 | 26 ratings

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Kjarks
5 stars I have always had some tenderness for this group. I discovered it in 1993, thanks to Musea records, at a time where prog rock was still searching for a real revival. Most existing prog bands had more or less a "neo prog" style in the vein of Marillion, IQ, Pendragon, more especially in the UK (Jadis, Grey Lady Down, Pallas, Abel Ganz...). I was quite enjoying the Genesis inspiration of these bands but I missed the rich diversity of the 1970's. Only few groups were trying to recreate the multi-form inventiveness of this period : Anglagard in Sweden, some japanese bands regenerated ELP (Ars Nova, Gerard) and some others.

I want to underline that Kalaban has been a kind of pioneer in the rediscovery of a more complex, elaborated, creative prog music just before the emergence of the great phenomenas we well know today (Spock's Beard, Flower Kings, Arena and so on). Of course, it's not a major group. They only released two albums. But they contributed to keep the torch in flame during a somber period for elaborated prog music.

The influences on their first record could be found in different styles : UK, ELP, even King Crimson... and it also contained a lot of jazz-rock elements (some parts make me think about Allan Holdsworth)... This second one is more mature : the imperfections and clumsiness of the preceding one, more especially concerning the guitard sound, have been solved. The musicianship is quite good, David Tomas' voice is fine, between Geddy Lee and Robbie Steinhardt, but he makes it swing more !

The music is rich, full of ideas, alternating beautiful intricate epics (Hotash slay : 14,02 mn ; Eyes of a seer : 21,13 mn) and more compact and rythmic pieces : the very jazzy "Topspin" (4,32 mn) and "Possible worlds" (5,29 mn) after its aerial introduction. Epics are very elaborate, often impressive : full of rythm breaks (good rythmic section) and technical guitar and keys' fast developments.

This record does not diserve 5 stars but between 4 and 4,5. Though, I shall give it the highest rate for having played, in my opinion, an important intermediary role in a period in which the most inventive prog music was not reborn yet. Maybe they came too soon...

Kjarks | 5/5 |

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