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Isopoda - Acrostichon CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.30 | 38 ratings

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Prog Folk Researcher
3 stars I actually borrowed the Musea CD version of this album, and can’t quite decide if it’s something I want to own. For the most part this is very decent (although somewhat light) symphonic prog album in the vein of Camel or even Harmonium at times (except for the bonus track which represents a different sound for the band). It has also been compared to ‘Wind & Wuthering’, and although I hear a lot more in that album than in this one, the comparison has some merit.

But the problem here is there a sense of waiting for the thing to take off, or for some gem to emerge, or for a real connection with the music to occur. But that doesn’t ever happen. The more I think about it the more this seems like the same kind of feeling I get from listening to most neo-progressive music: technical excellence, emotional void.

One problem of course is this thing came out at least 3-4 years too late. Real symphonic prog was in serious decline by 1978, and the emergence of pseudo art-rock/MTV cheese was just ramping up. These guys fell into the middle, both in terms of chronology and musically. Their music is clearly influenced by Genesis, Yes, Camel and the like, but the vocals and some of the arrangements seem to fall into the ‘neo’ category. This is especially true of “The Muse” and “Considering”. I’m not sure if this is because the band was trying to stick to their progressive roots while still putting out a commercially viable record, or if they really didn’t have strong roots to begin with. And on that note, I really don’t consider these guys to be symphonic – instrumentally they are far closer to what was often called Art Rock back then, but with some Genesis influences here and there. And except for the narration, “Don't Do It The Easy Way” kind of reminds me of some more mellow The Tangent tracks.

This is really about as close to a non-descript, generic progressive rock album as I’ve heard in a long time. I can’t find anything to say bad about it, or good for that matter. If you were looking for a prog-sounding soundtrack as background music for a play or movie but you didn’t want the music to be recognizable like Floyd or Genesis or something, this would be a great choice. As such I guess it is a three star album, but just barely. Mildly recommended, but not by much.


ClemofNazareth | 3/5 |


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