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The Flower Kings - The Sum Of No Evil CD (album) cover


The Flower Kings


Symphonic Prog

3.80 | 519 ratings

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4 stars I've been looking forward to the release of this Flower Kings cd since reading on their website from Roine Stolt that this album would be a return to a more Symphonic style of Prog. I'm pleased to say it is and after the disappointment of their last two releases, Adam & Eve and Paradox Hotel, we get a much more traditional style of Flower Kings record. After the shorter song format of their last album we get back to longer pieces with Love is the Answer clocking in at twenty five minutes, three tracks are around thirteen minutes and two shorter tracks.

I've held back a while from reviewing this album because I suspected it may be a grower. Fortunately I was right as on first listen it all went over my head and didn't really feel like anything had really stuck. But it's worth perseverance as after a few listens it's secrets started to reveal themselves and I'm now of the opinion that it's their best effort since at least Unfold the Future. The band are on fine form and special mention should go to Zoltan Czorsz for his excellent Drumming throughout. It's a shame he's no longer part of the band on a full time basis.

It's difficult to pick out favourite tracks as the quality is there throughout the album but thirteen minute opener, One More Time is as good a song for the band to state their return to a more Symphonic approach as any and sets the tone for the rest of the album. Longest track Love is the Answer is next and has all the twists and turns you would expect from a Flower Kings Epic. Strong melodies throughout and great instrumental interplay too.

As usual, Stolt shares vocal duties with Hasse Froberg who I think most people would agree is the better singer of the two. A lot of people think Stolt is a bit of an acquired taste and maybe he is but to fair he's not a bad vocalist at all. What can't be disputed though are his skills on the Guitar and is an excellent solo player in particular playing carefully chosen and well placed notes making his solos very melodic most of the time.

The more straight forward and shorter Trading my Soul is probably the weakest song here, not bad at all really but it's up against some stiff competition being followed by the superb The Sum of No Reason. Instrumental Flight 999 (Brimstone Air) is fun (not what the title might suggest) and Czorsz's Drumming is all over the place; excellent stuff! The album closes in fine style with another thirteen minute epic, Life in Motion. This track contains Froberg's strongest vocal of the entire record and a beautiful Guitar solo from Stolt is also worth noting.

After this superb release hopefully The Flower Kings are back on track again and stick to what they do best for their next release. A very strong four star rating and one of the albums of the year so far.

Nightfly | 4/5 |


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