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Ovrfwrd - Fantasy Absent Reason CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.76 | 25 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Ovrfwrd

With great apologies to Ovrfwrd, I am at last posting a review of their 2015 release "Fantasy Absent Reason" many months after I agreed to listen to the album and write a review. I have been listening to the album over the last few months and at least on a couple of occasions had decided that I would write a review once I got home only to find I had other things awaiting my attention.

So what do we have here? An instrumental album of 5 tracks running about 44 minutes. The instrument line up is electric guitar, piano and synthesizer, bass, and drums and percussion. There's some harpsichord at the beginning and flute later on. As the band doesn't need to be concerned with fiddling with lyrics or finding someone qualified to sing them, the musicians can concentrate on creating music to captivate and hold interest.

The title track opens the album with over sixteen minutes of shifting between heavy guitar and piano and brief atmospheric interludes. Take note of the drummer as he earns a spot in the limelight in the more dramatic moments. Listening to the track right now, I'm following all the shifts and changes in nuance; however, many times as I walked between my house and the train station (about a 35-minute walk) my mind wandered and I missed a lot of interesting moments.

"Brother Jack McDuff" comes across as an early seventies jam number. There's organ and again that drummer is holding down his seat really well. A good rollicking nostalgic bit of music.

"Dust Nova" begins quite serenely before picking up the pace. The main theme appears to be a simple piano chord progression backed by a rapid guitar melody and a busy drum rhythm. This reiterates as the music gradually builds in drama with the guitar melody being replaced by heavy chords. I'm reminded a little of Pelican here, though the sound of Ovrfwrd is distinctly different. The music returns to its simple beginning with cascading piano notes over effective percussion and clean, wavering, strummed guitar chords.

"Utopia Planitia" is a dramatic track with some savage flute following some wild playing of the band. As with other tracks, the pace changes with some easier sailing sections while others are more active and unsettled. There's room for guitar and keyboard solos and some ominous moods created by heavy guitar and rhythm while a spacey synthesizer weaves through the calamity. I'd say this is a good place to start if you want a feel for the album.

"Creature Comforts" brings the album to a close with a slow and carefully tread opening that yields to an eighties hard rock style of finger plucked chords. The track is pleasant but ends rather soon.

I think the band have done a good job of creating an instrumental album that's not too long and includes music that is not too complex but has still received careful attention. The use of piano, drums and percussion, and heavy guitar create some terrific moments of both drama and beauty, and the band are sure to include moments for cooling down and taking it easy.

Despite the 44-minute length, this almost feels like an EP. The album begins with a long track and closes with a brief and more laid back track. I feel as though two tracks are missing, perhaps one at each end. The lengthy instrumental opening the album seems to soon and the final track wraps up the album with less ceremony than seems fitting. The music is not as complex or involved as my recent preferences have been, but for something that allows you to feel energy, mood, and atmosphere in a rock instrumental format, this is rather a decent album. Three and a half stars.

FragileKings | 3/5 |


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