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The Flower Kings - The Rainmaker CD (album) cover

THE RAINMAKER

The Flower Kings

 

Symphonic Prog

3.48 | 339 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

infandous
3 stars This was quite a disappointment at the time of release. I liked it well enough, but it seemed weak in comparison to the previous album and compared to the concert I purchased it at. The reality is that this was something of a stop gap album. Drummer Jamie Salazar had already quit when the album was recorded, but agreed to do the drums for this one. His performance is probably one of the main let downs with this album. He sounds like he is just fulfilling an obligation and nothing more. The drums were also recorded in a separate studio (not unusual for the Kings, but up to this point he had done his drum parts at Stolt's studio). Again, the overall effect is that he was just fulfilling an obligation and not really very excited about it.

The music itself, while being generally good, is not very exciting or moving the way previous albums had been. Two tracks stand out for me, Last Minute On Earth and Road To Sanctuary. They are the two longest tracks, and to me, the two best. The first is a great opener that gave me high expectations for the rest of the album. The second is a classic Flower Kings mini-epic that hits all the right buttons. Sadly, the rest of the album does not hold to the standard of these two songs. World Without a Heart is a pleasant, but totally forgettable, ballad type piece. The Rainmaker is a very nice symphonic instrumental, something of a march almost, that reminds me of the band The Enid. I still wonder though, why the album was named after this track as I don't find it strong enough to be a title track. City of Angels is actually quite good..........except for the horrible chorus that I simply can not stand even after repeated attempts. Still, they only sing it 3 or 4 times and the second half of the song features excellent synth work from Tomas Bodin. Elaine is another mostly forgettable ballad type piece with somewhat silly lyrics......but ends with an awesome fusion type outro that I wish they would have extended. It seems this was a very small taste of what was to come in the next album, the masterpiece Unfold the Future. Through These Walls I actually like, because it is so different from anything else they have done. For some reason it reminds me of The Doors. Sword of God is one of my least favorite FK songs of all time, sounding like an average hard rock song from the early to mid 80's. The middle break is okay, but over all just too "hard rock" for my taste. Blessing Of a Smile is an atmospheric and rather forgettable short instrumental, while Red Alert is a great little lead in to the final track (I with they would have extended this one.....a very Genesis feel to it). Serious Dreamers is a good song, with a powerful chorus that could easily be mistaken for Yes. Some nice playing on this one and an interesting structure.

So overall, a solid three stars for this one. Good, but not great. Considering this is my least favorite album (though I rank it above CD 2 of Flower Power) along with Adam & Eve, I think it says something about this band that I still can't give it less than 3 stars.

infandous | 3/5 |

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