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Galahad - Jheronimus (Songs of Earthly Delights) CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

3.05 | 3 ratings

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Prog-Folk Team
3 stars Not to be confused with the British neo prog group of the same name, the almost as prolific German Celtic Rockers have released their first full length album since 2011's "Incredibile". While it has been issued as as a double LP, the quotient of original material is no greater than on an average CD, as side D offers a couple of reworkings of two early classics. As to the music, it's like no time has passed at all. This is still melodic ensemble folk rock led by the songwriting and flute of Paul Alexander Jost, the agreeable vocals of Tina de Vlinder, and a cornucopia of traditional and electrified instrumentation.

The group has always dabbled on the edges of prog's catchment pond and have tended to shun extended more elaborate pieces, but one could always look forward to exhilarating experiments within those confines. I'm thinking of the Latin hymn inspired "Incredibile" and the MORRIGAN-like "Fox at the Airport" as shining examples of that adventurous spirit on the album of the same name and "Ladhivan" respectively. Unfortunately, that rebelliousness is all but abandoned on "Jheronimus". Sure they can still rock hard and well on numbers like "Another Mother's Son", and "Airy Fairy" is the type of playful tune that they can churn out blindfolded while still sounding accomplished and beguilingly lucid. "The Word" popped out of their archetypal Celtic ballad generator and that suits me just fine.

Galahad's lovable formula might have wholly succeeded by sheer will over the course of 60 minutes if it weren't for a few more pedestrian rockers like "Antie Ant" and a general sense that the script hasn't been tweaked enough to excite the long time players or their audience . In the finale, "The Return of the Piper" from the 1997 album of the same name is reprised and reminds us of the majesty of those early days. In the original version of Piper we got Jost's bloodcurdling wail at the end of every chorus, encapsulating the horror that those poor parents must have felt as they watched their children follow the Pied Piper out of town after they refused to pay him for his extermination services. In this version, he can't even muster an agonized whimper. But he's still the piper and I'll follow him wherever.

kenethlevine | 3/5 |


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