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Echolyn - Suffocating The Bloom CD (album) cover

SUFFOCATING THE BLOOM

Echolyn

 

Symphonic Prog

4.20 | 219 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

infandous
4 stars This album is practically overflowing with youthful enthusiasm. These guys are roughly the same age as me (I was playing in a prog band, doing my originals, at this exact same time, only half a state away in Pennsylvania) and this album brings back feelings and emotions that I was experiencing at that time, even though I only heard the album back in 2000 or so!

So right away, emotion is a given for this album. From the start, with the wonderful "21", we hear an energetic and complex yet melodic mix that is Echolyn's trademark. This song is a great introduction to the album and the band (and this was the first album of theirs I ever heard). Winterthru is quite meaningful to me as well, having grown up in the same US state as these guys, their winter memories are quite similar to mine. A Little Nonsense is where most of the Gentle Giant comparisons come into play, and rightfully so as this is almost a tribute to that great band. On future albums this influence will become much more integrated into the sound of the band and much less derivative. Still, a great song. The next few songs are a mix of heartfelt balladering (One Voice) and driving rockers (Here I Am) and a slightly jazzy instrumental (Cactapus). All done in Echolyns unique style, my simplifications don't really do them justice. So far, every song has been good or great. Finally, we reach the monumental 28 minute epic, A Suite For The Everyman. This focuses on the bands attempts at getting signed and trying to stay truly creative in music landscape dominated by image over substance. It concludes with the main theme from the album, that every individual has potential to do great things, if only they are allowed and allow themselves, to grow. Along the way we are treated to many mood and style changes, time changes, instrumental and vocal variety. Everything one could want in a prog epic, all infused with that youthful enthusiasm and energy I mentioned earlier.

This is an album for positive moods, though it does has some more downbeat type numbers, the lyrics are nearly always positive. I can't quite call this a masterpiece as Echolyn were still maturing with this Sophomore album, but it is a joy to listen to and always puts me and good mood and reminds me of all the promise of late teens and early 20's times of life. The music has a youthful glow that few albums can match. And it's damn good prog to boot! :-) Recommended, unless you can't stand positive energy in music.

infandous | 4/5 |

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