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Frost* - The Rockfield Files CD (album) cover





4.72 | 37 ratings

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5 stars If a tree falls while a band performs music in the desert without a gig or an audience, but there IS a camera present and a superb desert studio which is leveraged to immaculately record the performance for posterity, is the result a "live" DVD/album and do you want to hear it?

If your answer to the former more philosophical question was an emphatic "no", please allow me to recommend the more conventional Frost live recording "The Philadelphia Experiment".

Even so, If you appreciate skillful performances of fresh modern melodic progressive rock, you may not know it yet, but I can't help believing that when all is said and done, the answer to the second question will still be 'yes'! You DO want to hear The Rockfield Files. You want to hear it very much!!

For anyone new to Frost, although Jem Godfrey's keyboard skills are formidable, his approach is distinctly modern. Truth be told, a few of the percussive keyboard introductory lines would fit in fairly well as an integral part of a pop hit sung by some 'diva of the month'. Soon enough, however, they get interwoven into a tapestry of symphonic and metallic neo-prog elements before launching into virtuosic prog rock territory and never looking back. Such sonic appropriation may risk stretching the ears of conventional old-school proggers a bit farther outside their comfort zones than some would prefer. But it is also precisely the kind of 'neo-prog' that is essential if the genre is to retain any reasonable claim to the pretense of being even remotely 'progressive'.

Buyer beware. This is neither a 'live' DVD nor a 'live' CD in the conventional senses of the terms. It is essentially a studio album with some new compositions and a few side recordings of previously released pieces. Much - if not all - of it, however, appears to have been recorded simultaneously in single takes, hence the 'live' conceit (which admittedly somehow succeeds in making the recycling of material more palatable.)

For longtime Frost fans, this release's appeal is two-fold: 1) finally getting new tracks from one of the most fresh, unique, and accomplished modern USA prog bands and 2) getting to see them create such immaculate sonic perfection (dare I say it?) 'live in the studio'.

progpositivity | 5/5 |


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