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The Gourishankar - 2nd Hands CD (album) cover

2ND HANDS

The Gourishankar

 

Eclectic Prog

3.95 | 142 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

The T
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars A fantastic, if flawed, Russian release.

The music, as said previously in countless reviews, lays somewhere in between progressive-metal, symphonic-rock, with touches here and there of space rock or even national rock. There are moments where the band are riffing it hard, sections that sound influenced by DREAM THEATER. Those elements are intertwined with structures that remind us of symphonic rock, a la THE TANGENT (another band that falls in the "eclectic prog" category as it defies categorization, though it sounds more symphonic than anything else). The use of pianos is mixed with the use of hammonds and spacey synthezisers, with the casual appearance of wind instruments here and there. At times we think PINK FLOYD, at times PORCUPINE TREE, even RUSH. That the band manages to mix all of these influences and still sound coherent is a testament to their abilities.

The playing itself is never restrained. The band never seems to rest (with the exception of the vocalist who actually -and thankfully- rests throughout most of the album), and the music is like a cascade of constant notes and details. The harmonic work is excellent, and it even starts with a misleading statement: the first few moments of the album are almost a cacophony, with pianos playing in a different key than the rest of the instruments which at the same time are also doing what they want. But this chaos gradually dissapears in favor of very harmonic music. What follows is more than an hour of precious arrangements and virtuosic displays.

The musicians are excellent all the way through. Only the vocalist seems like the odd ball here. His voice, quite, sweet if we can say that, is completely overpowered by the music and, even though it fits it, it can't quite add to it. It's like the vocals are there and don't bother, but they could be removed and the results wouldn't be different. Maybe that's why the emphasis in the album seems to be on instrumental sections.

Besides the vocals, my only other complaint about THE GOURISHANKAR is that, by trying to be too much, they somehow can't come up with an identity of their own. They sound like everything else but at times I fail to hear music that makes me say "that's THE GOURISHANKAR!".

The album is, nevertheless, a success. I give it 4 stars, and for a few minutes I was ready to give it the fifth one. Maybe their next work could be perfect. This is a debut album after all. and quite a debut.

The T | 4/5 |

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