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Big Big Train - The Underfall Yard CD (album) cover

THE UNDERFALL YARD

Big Big Train

 

Crossover Prog

4.17 | 740 ratings

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TenYearsAfter
4 stars A very strong element in their music on this CD is guest drummer Nick D'Virgilio, what a touch of class and he also contributes on vocals in a very pleasant way on the highlight the concluding title track (featuring guest Francis Dunnery on guitar). Here we can enjoy Big Big Train in its full splendour, more than 20 minutes it's 24-carat symphonic rock delivering lots of captivating shifting moods and a very tasteful colouring with a wide range of instruments, from slide guitar, cello and choir-Mellotron to fiery electric guitar, Hammond organ and a slow synthesizer solo, this is Prog Heaven!

The other five compositions also contain a lot of variety and great atmospheres (often reminding me of 70-77 Genesis along some Yes and Pink Floyd). Remarkably is the varied use of brass - and woodwind instruments, from cornet and trombone to the French horn and tuba. But don't be afraid that these instruments dominate if you don't like cornet or tuba (like me) because due to Big Big Train their excellent compositional skills there is a fine balance with the other instruments like the guitar, keyboards and drums. This leads to very interesting combinations like the violin-Mellotron with a sitar or with a French horn and trombone (both in the opener Evening Star) or a choir-Mellotron as support of a cornet solo (in the long and alternating Victorian Brickwork). Finally I would like to mention that I am delighted about multi-instrumentalist David Longdon his vocals, often evoking Peter Gabriel to me. But that is also due to their use of the Mellotron, twanging guitars and flute, I have no problem that Big Big Train plays in the great tradition of 70-77 Genesis, not at all!

TenYearsAfter | 4/5 |

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