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Arz - The Magi CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.09 | 3 ratings

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3 stars With ''Serai'' out in August 2005 it wouldn't take too long for Steve Adams to launch the second Arz album.It was ''The magi'', released in December of the very same year.Unlike ''Serai'' this was a much more spiritual offering by the American multi-instrumentalist, dealing with mental issues and based on ancient and future sounds.

Stylistically the pair of opening pieces follow the vein of guitar-driven Instrumental Rock with emphasis both in technique and atmosphere, where sonic soundscapes meet with slow-paced melodies, psychedelic tunes and efficient soloing.Things start to get more personal and interesting with the 15-min. ''Ur'', refering to the Sumerian city in ancient Mesopotamia.Powerful guitar distortions and heavy rhythmic parts explode into psychedelic landscapes with atmospheric synths and sound effects.The music appears to be heavily influenced by RUSH, albeit often with a more metallic, angular edge on the electric leads.PINK FLOYD would be also a good reference point.As most of Arz'es cuts, this one offers dual guitar deliveries in a frequent ratio, mostly in an electroacoustic enviroment full of cinematic moods.The title-track is among the most ambitious pieces written by Adams.24 minutes of interesting, contemporary Heavy Rock, the title of which refers propably to the term used to mark the followers of Zoroastrianism.An intelligent blend of mascular rhythms and Eastern-influenced acoustic tunes, propelled also by a more pronounced use of orchestral keyboards.Maybe a bit too long as a whole, but most of it offers great lead guitars and solos, pounding drumming, archaic textures and, of course, some trully psychedelic moves.The closing ''Tea with me'' is another example of Adams' technical skills, featuring an even more flexible musicianship with fair doses of synths and piano in his familiar guitar dominance, which now flirts with Fusion due to a more jazzy style of playing and the smooth use of keys.

Solid second album by Arz.Electricified instrumental Prog Rock with a heavy sound and a nice injection of ethnic tunes.Recommended.

apps79 | 3/5 |


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