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Leap Day - Awaking The Muse CD (album) cover

AWAKING THE MUSE

Leap Day

 

Neo-Prog

4.00 | 109 ratings

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tszirmay
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Here is another expected jewel from the Prog factory/windmill that is Holland. This is a collaborative cooperative with prolific members from Flamborough Head/Trion, King Eider, Nice Beaver and Pink Floyd Project, getting into a common groove and recording this fine Neo/symph debut. The Dutch are such a talented lot that constantly excel at maintaining a high quality of melody and stellar musicianship in everything they attempt. With 2 keyboardists , the sound is a lush launching pad for Eddie Mulder's flamboyant guitar soloing , hints of all the prog greats are to be found in his incisive yet harmonious style. Vocals are ably handled, nothing within the realm of genius but fit in well into the scheme of things. As usual with bands from Holland, the rhythm section is rock solid. But what really stands out are the cleverly appealing compositions , mostly penned by unknown entity and keyboardist Gert van Engelenburg, that evoke a myriad of pastelled impressions , such as the masterfully cinematographic "Secret Gardener", the Kubrick-hinted "Eyes Wide Open" with its towering axe solo and the veiled proggy allusions to Kraftwerk on "Shop Window Dummies". All 3 tracks are exceptional. The opener "When Leaves Fall' (how appropriate) is quite remindful of German band Sylvan, proposing a dark, less metallic yet moody neo- prog that has some tortured strains within the rumbling grooves, sullen organ blasts, imposing guitar revelations and an ornate piano at the right time. The singing is catchy and highly infectious . The gorgeous "Sandgrains" has a sublime guitar theme that is both grandiose and effervescent, a heartfelt vocal only confirms the passion extolled, a rumbling slice of high-gloss progressive rock that is anything but pedestrian. Certainly fans of IQ, Pendragon, Arena, Clepsydra and Marillion will love what their ears are hearing. The epic 9 minute + "Little Green Men" puts a final touch of class on the deal, a musical whirling dervish of mood and sound, some whistling synthesizers diving within the roaring organ pools and further propulsed by some determined beats. As proven with the Trion project, guitarist Eddie Mulder at times reminds me of Collage/Believe fret legend Mirek Gil in that his solos just burst out of nowhere and gleam with effusive class. With the recent arrival of Knight Area's third opus, my musical universe is heavily "orange", some good needed prog vitamin C, just before the onset of Canadian winter. This is an exceptional first offering and all fans of quality music should check Leap Day out. Great atrwork to boot. 5 sauntering orange footballs
tszirmay | 5/5 |

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