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Karfagen - Messages from Afar - First Contact CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.97 | 167 ratings

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4 stars I knew this band (and the other project named "Sunchild" by the mastermind Antony Kalugin) only recently at a festival in Italy. So I cannot say I have followed their evolution so far. Anyway I listened to almost all their music now and I must say that what strikes most is their eclecticism: even though their sound is perfectly recognizable, you can find in it classic prog with many shades of folk, jazz, even some new wave...p In this record I would say the bearing structure is made of symphonic prog. The album begins with "First contact" and both the voice and the guitar sound remind me of David Gilmour (I dare to say Pink Floyd 90's era). But it is only the first section of the song, that soon developes into something different: a long instrumental part and then again some great guitar moments. This emotional rollercoaster will be a constant throughout all the album.p Other strong dish is the trio "Faces in the clouds"/"Vale of dreams"/"Golden fields of rye". The three songs flow as they were one single piece of music (at least it is my feeling) but in this streaming I can find several moods and emotions: everything is in its right place, from an astonishing guitar work to some delicate piano and sax interludes.p The record ends up with the longest track, the 15-minute long "Constant flow". Despite its name, the song is not so "constant", but it is an intricacy of different melodies, among which stand out some Genesis influences (or again it is my feeling). The closure is a sort of reprise of the Pinkfloydesque initial tunes.p I think in this record they focused mainly on the richness, warmth and complexity of the music, more than on some musical research like in other Karfagen works, and from this point of view the result has been perfectly achieved. Everything sounds very warm and emotional, and it is not always common when you play this kind of music. Special mentions for the guitar musicianship, with a lot of different and intricate tunes but always focused on the feelings, and for the wonderful cover art. I know there will be a continuation of this concept in the new Sunchild opus; I am looking forward to listening to it.p
ale73 | 4/5 |


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