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Renaissance - Scheherazade And Other Stories CD (album) cover

SCHEHERAZADE AND OTHER STORIES

Renaissance

 

Symphonic Prog

4.32 | 1204 ratings

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Dark Nazgul
4 stars Thousand and one words could not describe this beauty.

This album represents a sort of cornerstone in the career of Renaissance because with this record, on one side, the band released the sublimation of his progressive style (through one of the most successful fusion between rock and symphonic music of the 70s) and, secondly, show the first signs of wanting to give a more commercial appeal to their songs. It is also important to note the use of synth, which is very rare in the previous records. The centerpiece of the album is represented by the excellent suite Song of Scheherazade which occupies the entire second side of the 'original LP. The long epic is a top of the band's career, perhaps even the highest point ever reached in a single song from Renaissance. The lyrics refer to one of the most famous tales of the "Thousand and One Nights" but what really makes the difference is the excellent result of the fusion of rock music and symphony orchestra. The orchestral parts are performed by the London Symphony Orchestra, and they are absolutely fundamental in the construction of this long epic, so that in some moments the band is totally absent and the orchestra is the absolute protagonist of the scene. This aspect is a clear differentiation than in the past, where the orchestral parts were limited to give more redundancy to the sound of the band, in my humble opinion with not remarkable results. It should be emphasized above all the extraordinary contribution of the vocal choir of the London Symphony Orchestra, the section "The Young Prince And Princess" with a wonderful interpretation by John Tout on piano and Annie Haslam on vocals, and the amazing, majestic, grand finale.

The opening A Trip To The Fair is another excellent track. It opens with a long introduction by Tout on piano and various rhythm changes that lead to the vocal part, as always impeccably executed by Annie. The arrangements recall the classic music that you hear in markets or fairs.

The reasons why I will not rate with five star this excellent album are the other two songs: Ocean Gypsy," too melodic for my taste and monotonous after several listening, and the short and insipid The Vultures Fly High, clearly a filler.

In any case, this is an album not to be missed for lovers of symphonic genre, and the best album of Renaissance after "Ashes Are Burning".

Final rating 8/10.

Best song: Song Of Scheherazade

Dark Nazgul | 4/5 |

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