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Thieves' Kitchen - Argot CD (album) cover


Thieves' Kitchen


Eclectic Prog

3.41 | 63 ratings

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3 stars Immediately after the release of ''Head'' Thieve's Kitchen were about to compose new material for a second album.Midway through this decision though Paul Beecham was somewhat forced to quit due to family commitments.The band welcome new bassist Andy Bonham, who came up with the idea of providing some fretless bass lines into the sound.Recordings started in January 2001, Beecham was not totally absent, adding some woodwind lines into the material, and two months later ''Argot'' was set for release.As with the first album, this one was independently launched by the band.

A longer album but a reduced number of tracks meant that Thieve's Kitchen were quite ambitious to deliver epic compositions all the way through, none of the four cuts clocked at less than 13 minutes!The music is on par with the first album, basically an affair between Neo/Symphonic Prog and different echoes coming from Jazz and even Canterbury Fusion.They did this though by offering a strong amount of powerful keyboards, including synths, organ and Mellotron, often in duplicate deliveries, and some really serious guitar work by Mercy, which draws influences from both the classic Prog heroes (STEVE HOWE, STEVE HACKETT) and jazzier executors (ALAN HOLDSWORTH, TONY SPADA).The arrangements are trully complex and often chaotic with endless time signatures, tempo variations and a huge atmospheric variety, passing from Classic 70's Prog and Fusion to modern Neo Prog with comfort.They remind me a bit of MR. SIRIUS, although in a rather more complex approach, swirling around symphonic and light jazzy elements, but prooving to be fairly consistent throughout the whole album.First and last track are the best in my opinion, very good Sympho Prog with Fusion and Canterbury orientations and loads of vintage keyboards, the other two pieces are more into Neo/Symphonic Prog with some dreamy climates, but also captivating and demanding instrumental exercises.

File next to Germans ARGOS and compatriots THE TANGENT.Simon Boys' voice maybe leads to more Neo-styled paths, but the music is far more than this, featuring some tremendous jazzy torturing among the standard symphonic echoes.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

apps79 | 3/5 |


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