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Salva - Off The Deep End CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.28 | 18 ratings

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3 stars This is already Salva its studio-album #5, but my first musical experience with this Swedish prog formation. After a few listening sessions I notice that on this new album Salva sounds like a 'Tribute To The History Of Rock, Prog And Pop', what a dazzling variety!

Between prog metal, Gothic rock and melodic rock in King Of Nothing (bombastic choirs, heavy keyboard sound, a propulsive rhythm-section and fiery electric guitar, evoking Within Temptation but also fellow Swedish rockers Europe) and the final track Brickshort (very varied, with an exciting intro delivering a glorious church organ ' and Mellotron choir sound, along Gothic choirs, celestial female vocals and fat synthesizer flights).

Progressive pop with hints from Eighties Manfred Mann's Earth Band in Clarity I (swinging with tasteful keyboards and guitar) and like Alan Parsons Project in Skyclad (dreamy with a howling electric guitar solo and emotional vocals).

AOR in Clarity II (tight beat, rock organ and guitar and sparkling keyboards) and Clarity III (bombastic and dynamic with lush Hammond and powerful guitar, like Eighties Kansas).

Folk rock in the epic The Ghost Of Fives (varied with a wide range of instruments, from a tin-whistle sound to acoustic guitar and piano).

My highlight is the 10 minutes epic composition Under the Fear. First a swinging rhythm featuring fat synthesizer flights, then an up-tempo beat with bombastic Hammond. The music shifts into first dreamy vocals with soaring Mellotron violins and then a mid-tempo in a bombastic climate with heavy Hammond sound and again fat synthesizer flights propulsive drums. Halfway again dreamy with warm vocals and Mellotron violins, emotional vocals and tender piano, including a sparkling synth solo with powerful drum beats. The second part is also loaded with variety: from a swinging accellaration with a bombastic climate and strong vocals to a dreamy atmosphere with voices, wonderful piano runs. And finally a very compelling sound: bombastic keyboards and strong vocals, lush Hammond, fat synthesizer flights, culminating in Prog Heaven with a majestic Mellotron choir sound and moving electric guitar solo with howling runs, like the best Pallas, IQ and Marillion, wow!

In my opinion Salva its newest effort Off The Deep End album suffers from a bit too ambitious approach at some moments, too many ideas and too much variety. And some tracks sound for me too polished, like the AOR inspired songs and the ballad Clarity IV. But in general I conclude that this new Salva effort contains lots of entertaining and tastefully arranged music. With good work on keyboards and guitar, I hope on its next album Salva will focus on compositions like King Of Nothing and especially Under The Fear, I am sure then Salva will showcase more of its potential.

TenYearsAfter | 3/5 |


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