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Magenta - The Twenty Seven Club CD (album) cover





3.84 | 226 ratings

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kev rowland
Special Collaborator
Honorary Reviewer
4 stars Yet again Magenta are working as a core trio, with Christina Booth (vocals), Chris Fry (guitars) and Rob Reed (everything else) plus a guest drummer in Andy Edwards. Now, I known Rob for many years and even put Cyan on the cover of Feedback in another lifetime, and have followed his musical adventures with interest. But it has been with Magenta that he has made his name within the neo-prog scene, and this album will only do more to enhance that reputation. This is a concept album in the sense that each of the songs is about a different musician who passed away when they were 27, so for example we start with "The Lizard King" and end with "The Devil At The Crossroads", and throughout we are treated to some wonderful soaring progressive rock, and while Rob is at the heart of what is happening musically it is Christina who will always be the star of the show.

She has a wonderful voice, with great range, control and emotion, with a timbre not unlike Steve Nicks in her prime, yet with more soul and passion. Rob knows how to write material that is going to highlight this, and together they have combined to produce another album that is sheer class from start to finish. Chris's guitar provides the cut through that provides the additional edge that is needed, the harsher solo that takes away any thoughts of saccharine, the rock riffs that provide the depth. Andy Edwards proves yet again why he is such a sought after drummer with a powerful performance, while Rob is everywhere, providing fills and solos in whatever instrument he is using.

This is a band with a large sound, and in Christina have one of the finest singers around, combined with music that is always searching a way forward. Some may condemn this as just another neo-prog album, as for some reason that is a sub genre which purists often look down upon, but I and many others really enjoy this as a musical form, and there are as few as adept at it as Magenta. It may not be in quite the same league as 'Seven', but is a damn fine album all the same and one I enjoyed immensely.

kev rowland | 4/5 |


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