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K2 - Book Of The Dead CD (album) cover





3.51 | 96 ratings

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4 stars K2 are the result of Ken Jaquess's anxious spirit,a music project featuring well-known musicians from the prog scene.Ken was the bassist of the US prog band Atlantis,who released two albums betwwen 1997 and 2002,before putting them on ice for the sake of a new project around the Egyptian book of the dead.Calling Allan Holdsworth on guitars,Shaun Guerin as a vocalist and Ryo Okumoto on keys,this project was meant to succeed.Never having performed live,K2 released their debut on ProgRock Records in April 2005.

Much of the musicians' personalities are on the front listening to this album and the 23-min. opus ''Infinite voyage'' is the best example.A very atmospheric track based on the sensational Gabriel-esue vocals of Guerin and the atmospheric synths of Okumoto.Holdsworth is also there to deliver great solos close to his work with U.K.,while the violin passages of Yvette Devereaux comes like a cross between Eddie Jobson and KANSAS' Robbie Steinhardt.Okumoto alternates his work between piano,synths and Hammond,bringing on the surface memories of his SPOCK'S BEARD's days,though this time his playing is more grandiose and deep.Not that complex,but certainly a great track full of changing atmospheres and moods.

Going for the shorter tracks,Guerin's voice comes even closer to my ears to CITIZEN CAIN's Cygnus,as in the catchy ''Mirror in the spirits'',featuring dreamy synths along the way,a memorable chrorus and a fantastic spacey guitar middle section delivered by Holdsworth.K2 seem to intent on deep atmospheres and that's what happens with ''The edge of light'',where Devereaux's violin returns,but the track holds a slow tempo,dominated by Guerin's vocals and Okumoto's synths.Holdsworth distinctive guitars add an extra U.K. flavor again,though the track won't rise on high standarts.''Aten'' seems to be Jacquess' personal outburst.Background spacey synths will follow Ken's bass lines from the start to the end on an instrumental track,which can be regarded only as a soundscape for all the dreamy listeners.''Cloak of Antiquity'' will lead you to the end of the album and this is the closest thing to U.K.'s legend. Driving violins,memorable grooves,heavy use of floating synthesizers and a fair amount of (again) atmospheric and emotional vocals are an excellent epilogue to a very nice effort.

A great epic,two very good tracks and a mediocre one (I won't count the short instrumental one) sum up to 3.5-4 star rating.Well,I will go with 4 for this one,recognizing the band's talent and the excellent reincarnation of the classic U.K. sound!

...and a last personal notice: this in not neo prog by any means...

apps79 | 4/5 |


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