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Transatlantic - Kaleidoscope CD (album) cover

KALEIDOSCOPE

Transatlantic

 

Symphonic Prog

3.83 | 409 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

voliveira
5 stars 9.5/10

Every album Transatlantic should have a higher score than 4:00 here in PA. This is not just fact; it's like a rule .

Each of the albums of this supergroup is an event in the history of modern prog . But with his latest offering, The Whirlwind, I was frankly disappointed. Not only because it was an album a tiring listening (sorry , but as much as I love progressive rock music can not stand long as well , even if they are divided into several parts), but it was considerably less than the masterpieces and SMPTE Bridge Across Forever. Simply did not understand the hype around it , and still do not understand .

That said, I was anxious and afraid with Kaleidoscope. This album would be a masterpiece like the first two or disappointment as The Whirlwind? Thus arose the first reviews and ratings here on the site, he started on a high note, but quickly fell, the lowest among the four works in the band at the time. What I think is somewhat unfair.

I mean, okay he demands again and listens to convince you a masterpiece, but how many albums did we love it? Neal Morse's voice is tired and aged? YES! It's more of the same? YES! But you know what? Screw it! I really love this album, and for me it is the first masterpiece of this year, at least the first I hear.

What else can you expect from an album that brings together four of the best musicians in the progressive scene, covered in influence and masters at what they do? Talking to each is stating the obvious. Any Transatlantic album will come with a lush musicality is known. It is one of the reasons why they are so acclaimed.

Another reason is, of course, epic. The first, Into the Blue, has been a favorite of many on the album and I think that's my case too. Despite feeling that he has less dynamic than other epics of the band (like Duel With The Devil, which remains my favorite song of theirs), is still full of great moments. The ethereal intro, full of sounds and a beautiful cello Chris Carmichael (who has a very important role in this album, more than in others), is just the beginning of a long instrumental overture of 6 minutes. I think it's because of this very long introduction that music has less dynamic, in my view. Anyway... I will not limit myself to describing the epic second per second, but some of my favorite moments are the explosion of one of the many themes of the song and the time to 12:30 on 16 minutes where we are presented with a beautiful voice Daniel Gildenlow. And you still wonder why this guy is one of my favorite vocalists? I hope he wins a greater share within the band, as it has done in their lives.

The next three songs are short in the style that the band has done on previous albums. Shine is a beautiful semi-acoustic ballad, especially with a nice dynamic between Neal Morse and Roine Stolt. Stolt has a great voice that fits a particular category of mine, which also come David Gilmour and Jerry Cantrell: the great guitarists with sing softly. There close to four minutes we still had a brief role of Mike Portnoy on vocals. But surely the best moment of the song is the solo Stolt that runs on a different tone from the rest of the song ( F instead of G ). Black as the Sky reminds me of the days of Mystery Train, which is one of the most dynamic and beloved songs of the group. The highlights here are beyond virtuous instrumental section with the usual keyboards Morse (reminding me too much of Spock's Beard) and dynamic battery Portnoy and guitars Stolt (everything always accompanied by poignant bass Trewavas), the part where the four musicians take turns on vocals. Showing that the four can be great singers, and proving that this is not a one-man band, as some insist. Finally comes the short and ethereal Beyond the Sun, full of slide guitars and cello, creating a very spiritual atmosphere, emphasized by the letters of Morse. I really like to see him bringing that sound to the band, unlike most (after all it is still the only Christian prog artist I know, and need to stick to it).

The last song is the title track, which runs about 32 minutes. It does not open with ethereal introductions as Into the Blue, but picks up where Beyond the Sun ends, his first three minutes presenting an aggressive range of themes until it opens into the second section of the song, "Ride the Lightning". At 4 minutes Neal begins to sing (and I really love the "dry" sound of drums Portnoy at that time): " Lift - lift me high , why teach me , I've been born in the world of pain , so confused in the masquerade." After this section verse-chorus- verse-chorus, the music fades to start a new session (this fading is caused to enable music division into two parts in version vinyl album). After a new session sung by Stolt, there is an excellent keyboard solo followed by more guitars before the song from a fun Beatles- esque section, sung by Trewavas (Suite Charlotte Pike, anyone?). Notably, the music will still go through different dynamics, as some melancholy vocals accompanied by a guitar Howe-ish before it finds its most powerful and there for the last minute instrumental section back to the theme of "Ride the Lightning" and ends with a solo glorious guitar that ends in a fade-in.

So that's it. Transatlantic lived up to my expectations again. Kaleidoscope can be a little below than their first two albums, since it offers nothing challenging regarding which we have heard before, but it is a more satisfying experience than the median The Whirlwind. It is proof that Morse, Stolt, Trewavas and Portnoy (and Carmichael and Gildenlow) still have force to surprise the prog world, and I really hope they do not take too much to release a new album. Long live to Transatlantic! 5 stars.

voliveira | 5/5 |

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