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Fireballet - Night On Bald Mountain CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.51 | 94 ratings

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3 stars This is considered something of a lost gem of 70's Symphonic Prog. The music is quite good and well written; the first song 'Les cathédrales' is full of tasty analog synth leads intermingling with very good guitar leads. A weird spoken-word segment in the middle of the track is quite off-putting though, as are some of the vocals. There are excellent sax solos and jazzy guitar solos (a la Steve Howe) interspersed throughout the track.

The bass player is one bright spot... his playing is very powerful, somewhat similar to Chris Squire in tone. The best parts of the first two tracks happen to be the thick basslines..

Centurion has a very 'Heavy Prog' feeling and is my favorite track on the album. There are some excellent guitar solos and musical progressions here... as well as some well-played keyboards..

The song 'Fireballet' is decent too, but the vocals are a bit annoying... like a bad take on Yes or Queen.

'Atmospheres' is a softer song that reminds very strongly of early Genesis' mellow tracks (think Supper's Ready's acoustic passages). Very nice song featuring a lovely flute solo. My second favorite track on the album.

The epic finale 'Night on Bald Mountain' is a take on Mussorgsky's classic composition mixed with the band's own compositions. It's not the best take on Mussorgsky i've ever heard, but it's passable and works ok as an intro... I could not listen to this very often though. The song continues through a progression of themes, all of which are more impressive than the intro... excellent Moog leads everywhere and more awesome heavy bass playing. The vocals at times remind of Uriah Heep, which is a good thing in my book. The vocalist often has a very Hard Rock / early-Heavy Metal vibe to his singing... which sometimes works well and other times sounds a bit too forced and over-the-top.

Derivative...maybe, but there's something I really like about this band's playing. Not essential, but if you're a Symphonic Prog addict this record will surely scratch your itch.... at least for a little while. 3 stars.

AdamHearst | 3/5 |


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