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Eclectic Prog

4.12 | 579 ratings

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4 stars Iīve been told time and again that this album is a prog rock classic. I lent it one time and listened to the album for a couple of times before I decided it wasnīt for me. I found it too eighties sounding and not classic material at all. I bought the album this time and I am far more intrigued this time around. The keyboard sounds that Eddie Jobson use on the album is very eighties sounding, but Iīm not bothered anymore. Instead I really enjoy those sounds, so I guess it was a question of maturity for my part. My references are simply more developed these days.

Jobson, Holdsworth, Bruford and Wetton. Four outstanding musicians in a project together. This could have been all noodling but itīs the exact opposite. Beautiful melody lines and exciting arrangements is what I think about when listening to this album. For 1978 this must have been pretty futuristic sounding. I havenīt heard any other album from that time with keyboard sounds like this. The drum sound is also very eighties like. In fact the whole production reeks with eighties vibes. But itīs in a good way. What I can tell you is that albums like Jethro Tullīs A and Broadsword and the Beast and most of Rush eighties albums owe a lot to this one. UK is no stranger to Dream Theater either.

The music is very keyboard driven and itīs not very often you notice Allan Holdsworth. When we do though his work is brilliant. Listen to his solo in In the dead of night and his soloes in the song Nevermore, just brilliant stuff. He is not the most visible though, that price should go to Eddie Jobson who does everything perfect on this album. What a master he is on the keyboard and occasionally on the electric violin. His harmony vocals are also astonishing and helps me to swallow the weaker lead vocals from Wetton. If you have heard his contributions on keyboard on the Frank Zappa song Lemme Take You to the Beach from the album Studio Tan, you wouldnīt be so surprised about the futuristic sounds he creates on his keyboards but I only noticed his presence on that song recently. Bill Bruford delievers one of his best performances and a very different one from what we are used to from him. Wetton plays flawlessly of course and I must say that his vocal performance here is the best I have heard from him ( Iīm not a big Wetton fan. In fact I dislike many of his past perfomances). He isnīt a big singer, but I think it works ok here.

So this should be a 5 star album right ? Well not exactly. I hate to come down on an album that I really like, but as perfect as the music might be, I donīt care much for Wettonīs vocals. He does an ok job but nothing more. I canīt give the fifth star when I think the vocal performance could have been better. This is a big 4 star album and highly recommendable allthough not completely flawless.

UMUR | 4/5 |


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