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Focus - Hamburger Concerto CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.25 | 945 ratings

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Equality 7-2521
4 stars Two things amaze me about this album. The first of these is how genuinely symphonic this is both in sound and scope. Outside of the Italian scene no symphonic band I have heard come close in replicating the sound and texture of a symphony in a rock context. Just a glance at the plethora of instruments incorporated should give you an idea of the validity of this claim. The other is amazing point is the glaring strength and prominence of the lead guitar work which exists, yet manages to not compromise the symphonic flavor.

With that said the opening and closing tracks, both exhibiting a heavy classical influence, are fantastic as well as "Birth" and the title track from which the brunt of my aforementioned description comes. These four songs should be nothing less than euphoric to fans of symphonic and prog with a classical tinge (or any prog fan I should actually say). However, the two remaining tracks somewhat spoil this Hamburger dish. Few songs inspire more apathy in me than "Harem Scarem." It's 70s upbeat rocker. Certainly nothing wrong with that, but on this album it feels incredibly out of place, and more importantly it's not of exactly stupendous quality. Average describes it as best I can. The following track "La Cathédral De Strasbourg " is a nice jazzy number. It's good track that really captured me at first, but as the album gains more and more spins I find it doesn't stand up core of the album in quality.

Symphonic Prog is a very misleading title for many bands under that umbrella, but with Hamburger Concerto it gives you an apt description of what you're getting into. This is a fine album containing two tracks, "Birth" and "Hamburger Concerto," that no serious prog fan can go without hearing.

Equality 7-2521 | 4/5 |


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