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Outer Limits - The Scene Of Pale Blue  CD (album) cover


Outer Limits


Symphonic Prog

3.65 | 42 ratings

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Prog-Folk Team
4 stars "A Scene of Pale Blue" demonstrates a certain progression from "Misty Moon" of a few years earlier, but essentially the sound is intact: violin led progressive rock with lots of Crimson-esque rhythms and guitars, but with rich keyboard touches not seen in KC since their earliest days.

The opener, "Marionette's Lament", hearkens back to the title track from "Misty Moon" while showing improvement on the vocal front. The spoken or shouted parts do not really detract and seem to go well with the music. "Mixer" is also song oriented, heavy yet melodic in a dissonant sort of way. This is music that can appeal across the spectrum as long as the listener is mildly adventurous. It is really on the two longest tracks "Antipodean" and "The Scene of Pale Blue" that Outer Limits unleashes its full force. The shifts from crashing rhythm to ethereal keyboards and back again are brilliantly executed. In "Antipodean", a beautifully sung section is then taken over by gentle string synths (or mellotrons?) occupying the later part of the suite. The title cut features just about everything that makes symphonic prog the most popular sub genre - rich organs, choral effects, more angular guitar themes, odes to Genesis in their more reflective moments, even Italian themes not unlike those of Il Volo, rich vocal melodies, and an uplifting synthesizer themes to close things out.

For those who wonder what KC might have sounded like had they managed to combine their first incarnation with the Larks Tongues era, Outer Limits suggests an option. Enjoyable and challenging.

kenethlevine | 4/5 |


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