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Ice - The Saga CD (album) cover





3.30 | 29 ratings

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3 stars This Dutch band from Monster arose from the ashes of Maryson, when Wim Stolk, who passed away at the age of 60 in 2011, dissolved the project around 2000.Hein van den Brock, Chris van Hoogdalem, Henny van Mourik and Rob Boshuijzen, who were all involved in Maryson. decided to move on under the name of Ice, recruiting Ardie Westdijk on keyboards, formerly of Differences.The band lauched its debut ''The saga'' in 2005, after being signed by Musea Records.

This list of Dutch Neo Prog band seems neverending and Ice is yet another group to labeled as such, they have a clean and often grandiose sound, filled with keyboards and melodic guitars and, like many other Dutch acts of the style, they even throw in some organ lines to offer a kind of old-styled flavor.A bit similar to TIMELOCK, CLIFFHANGER and EGDON HEATH, the long experience of the members in the scene is reflected on a set of well-crafted compositions, based on atmospheric parts, crystalline vocals and odd synth flashing.At moments they even appear to explore a more AOR-spiced sound with striking rhythms and choruses, but for the most of its part ''The saga'' has this bombastic and epic style of modern Symphonic/Neo Prog with the dramatic turns, lyrical demonstration and emphatic musicianship.Speaking of lyrics, these were all written by a sixth hidden member, Rene Sterk.Ice prooved to be masters on creating strong emotional contents with this work, there are lots of changing moods throughout, ranging from melodramatic textures to more optimistic tunes, apparently the music goes the same way, passing from full-blown Neo Prog with symphonic keyboards and blistering guitars to more accesible and easily digested performances.Echoes of MARILLION and PENDRAGON dominate the album, which comes as another fine addition in the catalogue of Dutch Neo Prog.

The band kept it going with live performances over the years and in 2013 Sterk took over the bass duties for good, replacing the departing Henny van Mourik.

Solid Neo Prog with rockin' edges, epic deliveries and dramatic atmospheres.Did not expect anything else by a bunch of Dutch Prog veterans, an easy recommendation to all fans of the style.

apps79 | 3/5 |


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