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Phideaux - The Great Leap CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.26 | 209 ratings

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Honorary Collaborator
3 stars New Wave Prog ?

Yeah, music has evolved into forms and styles that no one had ever predicted before. When people started to get bored with legendary prog music and their promotion on what so called "concept" album, there was an era when punk and new wave music swept the progressive rock movement. New Wave bands came out with such name as Orchestral Maneuver in The Dark (OMD), Duran Duran, B 52s, Mo, Robert Palmer, The Police, Ultravox etc. Those who have inherited the traditional values of legendary prog bands like Genesis, ELP, Pink Floyd, yes, King Crimson would find the new wave / punk music was kind like disgusting. But then there was a movement with some musicians with brilliant ideas like Johny Warman, Rupert Hine, Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno, Robert Fripp etc. who tried to make music of new wave styles with progressive music touches.

But that was the past. On recent days, you might find bands like Radiohead, Sylvan, Carp Tree, Phideaux, Muse, etc. who have tried to marry new wave and prog music. The result is a music under Crossover Prog subgenre, I believe. One thing for sure, for most people, this kind of music is much accessible than the music by vintage prog rock band. In terms of structure, most of them are quite straight forward. So, what makes them progressive then? Well, I guess is there bold ideas to generate a new sub genre under the banner of prog and new wave.

As far as "The Graet Leap" by Phideaux, you might find it even at the very beginning of the album when the opening track "Wake Up" (4:03) gives you a clear image of what this kind of music is all about. It has all simplicity as demanded by new wave music plus a bit of ambience that bring the music forward under prog category. The vocal line is set down at medium register notes to lower ones as the main characteristics of this kind of music.

"You And Me Against A World Of Pain" (5:35) gives the pop psychedelic with the lind of melody it builds from intro part. The interlude / chorus line indicates the change in music style and this is why this kind of music is categorized under progressive genre. The cello instrument makes the music is rich in textures.

The music also provides good accentuation, musically, through the combined grooves, beats and singing style like indicated by the third track "The Waiting" (3:33) where the rhythm section relies heavily on acoustic guitar and keyboard. Phideaux gives its shot to more ambient music with a flavor of space psychedelic music like in "Abducted" (6:10).

The existence of string section like cello makes this record quite unique especially when it's combined with good choirs like presented in "Rainboy" (6:15). To expand their music horizon Phideaux gives "I Was Thinking" (4:24) which relies its rhythm section floating keyboard work. The other tracks are also good ones to enjoy like the one with quite poppy touch "Long And Lonely Way" (4:18) and the mellow one "They Hunt You Down" (3:54). Through this song I can find his vocal line which is similar to those of Sylvan or Rupert Hine.

Overall, this is a good record with quite accessible songs. This album would favor those who like bands such as Sylvan, Carp Tree, Muse, Radiohead. It might not favor those who adore Genesis, Yes or any other vintage symphonic prog music. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Gatot | 3/5 |


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