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Oliver Wakeman - The 3 Ages Of Magick CD (album) cover


Oliver Wakeman


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3.63 | 35 ratings

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3 stars The recent re-release by Esoteric Recordings includes three previously unreleased tracks and lots of looking back at the time when the elder son of Rick Wakeman had made his solo debut and was friendly contacted by Steve Howe. The collaboration however didn't start immediately, and perhaps Howe's role in the end product was primarily one of a mentor and producer, and to a lesser portion one of a co-musician. At least I would have wanted to hear much more of his guitars. The arrangements are extremely keyboard-oriented.

I have no urge to compare Oliver to his famous father as I'm not a fan of the latter (I do appreciate his collaborations in YES, but his solo output is usually too overblown and pretentious to my taste), and furthermore this is the only album I've heard from Oliver this far, but why stubbornly avoid some inevitable comparisons either? Oliver's composing style is much softer, not quite as oriented to the showing off in the keyboard virtuosity - who would ever expect it to be either. The atmosphere often approaches New Age; nocturnal, slightly mysterious, deeply romantic and with the inevitable "Celtic" flavour. Yes, quite beautiful and pretty, but on the other hand a bit clichéd and toothless. As I only had the CD in loan, I chose the best tracks to keep, but frankly the number of them was a small minority, in the end. Back in the early nineties when I listened to a lot of New Age and such, I would have been much more impressed. Some more edge and richer arrangements, please!

Matti | 3/5 |


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