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Tim Blake - The Tide Of The Century CD (album) cover

THE TIDE OF THE CENTURY

Tim Blake

 

Progressive Electronic

3.11 | 9 ratings

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Progfan97402
Prog Reviewer
3 stars I remember a new Tim Blake release in 2000 and it sported such a wonderful cover I expected something like a modernized Crystal Machine but I heard audio samples at the time and wasn't impressed. I've since heard the entire album and I have to say it's not bad and it's an improvement over his previous effort Magick but will never reach the heights of Crystal Machine or New Jerusalem. It had a much more professional production and sound than Magick which is a big benefit but his voice sounds just as shot as before. Also the addition of piano wasn't a good move as it seems foreign to his brand of progressive electronic. Out of the way, "Sarajevo" is by far my least favorite piece on the album. I realize it's about the atrocities committed in the former Yugoslavia as he wanted the song to be for Bosnia what Peter Gabriel's "Biko" was for South Africa. It worked for Gabriel not for Tim Blake especially where he gives it that trite '80s feel (luckily without that awful '80s production) and those bagpipes are pretty unforgiving. Blake works much better with cosmic sci-fi themes, not a socio- political statement, but having to hear what was going on in the 1990s in that area of the world upset him enough to write a song about it and for good reason.. "Tribulations" is much better than I expect given he's exploring reggae which is unusual for him. Usually artists doing reggae that has no business doing such really falls flat on their face but somehow Tim pulls it off. It's no Bob Marley but you don't expect it to be and is actually a nice piece. Much of the rest are piano and synth dominated pieces that aren't bad but the instrumental synth passages shine the most. "Byzantium Dancing" probably the most successful. As mentioned those vocals sound shot as if he's been smoking too many cigarettes. Not a masterpiece and "Sarajevo" could have easily been lost, but at least he kept the CD short at 43 minutes which could easily fit on vinyl but was never released on that format. Nice he didn't cram 75 minutes on one CD with only 40 minutes of worthwhile material. Good, not great therefore three stars.
Progfan97402 | 3/5 |

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