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Karmakanic - Wheel Of Life CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.73 | 177 ratings

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4 stars . as complex as Dream Theater's staccato but in jazz-rock fusion style

I got this CD long time ago, I think last year or the year before, but I did not get a chance to write something about it until I forgot completely and the CD got somewhere on the shelf. Lately, I remember this one after I spun The Flower Kings "The Sum of No Evil" even though I did not listen to it right away but the CD got in the queue to spin. It was interrupted due to I read from this site that Black Sabbath had now been added here while Black Sabbath was previously featured in my Saturday Night Rock program in local FM radio station, Trijaya. Not only that, right after Black Sabbath was featured at "Legend at 9" topic, the rock community I have got involved, i-Rock! celebrated its first anniversary with classic rock tribute, including Black Sabbath music & Ozzy Osbourne. So, last week I focused on spinning the Black Sabbath CDs. It's really energizing the mind. And now I'm coming back to true progressive music presented by Karmakanic - it's so joyful enjoying this CD having just completed heavy metal music by Black Sabbath. It's so relieving and so relaxing . I feel like I'm coming back to my homeland .. even though I know that heavy metal music has been in my life, and I love it also (not as deep as my love with unpredictable prog music).

Yeah, that's what I like most about prog music as everything is quite unpredictable. At one passage I can enjoy the beauty of its melody but it suddenly changes abrasively to other passage with barely no catchy melody but the complex arrangements and then move to complex interlude. It's basically like life, where you can only plan something but actually you do not know what's going to happen next with your plan because there is "divine" power that rules everything in the universe. Talking about "Wheel of Life" by Karmakanic, my excitement starts even from the first track "Masterplan Pt. 1" which at a nutshell somewhat influenced by the music style of The Flower Kings. No wonder because the key musician of Karmanic is the bass player Jonas Reingold (one of my favorite's bass players in progressive music). I like the unpredictable stream of music delivered by the band. It's very clear that the key members of the band: Jonas Reinglod (electric and fretless bass, additional keyboards), Göran Edman (vocals), Zoltan Csorsz (drumkit), and Krister Jonzon (electric and acoustic guitars) have demonstrated their excellent skills flawlessly through this track.

When I enjoy "Alex In Paradise" the same feeling happens to me where I find the music is inquiring the mind and soul through virtuosities of the players. I'm quite surprised with unexpected acoustic guitar in jazzy mode, in the middle of this track, which makes the music is really inspiring. And when I reach third track "At Speed of Light" I am much more convinced this is truly a wonderfully crafted music, demonstrating unique melody, dynamic percussion and dazzling drum work, tight bass lines and stunning keyboard. Zoltan Cszors is one of the best drummers I have ever known in progressive music.

"Do U Tango" also surprises me in a way that right after the female's narration "Excuse me, do u tango? I want to dance!" the music that follows is really dynamic, uplifting, complex with fast tempo. I like the Jonas Reingold bass playing, it's really excellent! The song has some jazzy components especially during break, augmented with pulsating keyboard work. Oh my God . I love this composition! It's so powerful and so dynamic. The music is as complex as Dream Theater's staccato but in jazz-rock fusion style and it's very inspiring. Jonas provides excellent bass guitar solo, wonderfully! I would say that this is the modern Return to Forever. I really appreciate this acrobatic composition.

"Where The Earth Meets The Sky" provides a musical break with less complex but still entertaining prog music style using piano solo, followed with tight basslines. Guitar solo takes part later while the bass guitar is still being played dynamically. The music moves dynamically and it reminds me to a blend of music by The Flower Kings and Return To Forever. The combined work of guitar, keyboard and bass guitar is really amazing. The title track gives another music style with Helge Albin on flute. It's very relaxing even though you still find acrobatic bass guitar work by Jonas. When guitar solo enters, the music style changes - this is what I call "unpredictable".

Overall, this album represents great demonstration of the band members' virtuosities in playing their respective instruments. But it's not only that which makes this album is interesting: the composition is tight and solid through relatively complex song structures. It's highly recommended for those of you who adore The Flower Kings, The Tangent, Kaipa, Return To Forever. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Gatot | 4/5 |


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