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Promethean - Gazing the Invisible CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

3.30 | 7 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Finnish PROMETHEAN were active between 1994-1998 and released two albums, this one being the debut. Interestingly the record deal was made with the Italian Avantgarde Music; back then the Finnish prog scene was struggling for life and was much more ignored by everybody else than today. The melancholic and basically quite pleasant rock of this album has elements from Folk, Gothic Metal and classically influenced Art Rock / Prog, but the depressed and mumbling expression of vocalist Timo Iivari underlines the group's Metal background, and for me is definitely the weakest link.

On the other hand, even I sometimes seek dark and sad emotions in music, and for that purpose I certainly prefer Iivari's understated, low key approach instead of more powerful and aggressive vocals. However I can't help thinking how much better this music would be with a "normal" singing. Especially with a suitable female voice it would probably be very delicious.

The sound is semi-acoustic, but it's mainly the flute that brings Folk ingredients (and also makes the frequent Jethro Tull and Camel references for this band, even if that may be an exaggeration in the end). Some tracks such as 'Gazing' feature also guest appearances for violin and cello. 'The' and 'Invisible' - not-so-clever wordplay on titles - are the instrumentals this album sincerely needed too. Without the vocals one can imagine listening to fairly good Prog Folk with classical music flavour in the arrangement.

The songwriting itself doesn't get very proggy. Another highlight with those instrumentals is 'The Kiss of All that Remained'. It's very atmospheric and sort of meditative with its percussion pattern, and the vocals in it are actually spoken (in fact they do approach spoken voice throughout the album). The final track 'Flowing Downwards' (10:37) stops as a song after 6 minutes and continues quietly with only some water sound effects; it's debatable if that makes it any better listening experience, but as another remainder of the more artistic goals it's OK.

Judged against the starvating state of Finnish Prog of the time, PROMETHEAN were pretty interesting - and promising, though they ended perhaps too soon. By the way, a decade later, ORNE shares many features with them: the deeply melancholic and dark emotion, an audible Metal background especially on the vocals, appearance of flute, and two albums released by an Italian label.

Matti | 3/5 |


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