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Lethe - Lethe CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.83 | 37 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Although 32 persons have rated this album, I'm surprisingly only the second reviewer. LETHE was a short-lived band from Netherlands. Most of the members had played together in a band called Mirror, whose sole album Daybreak (1976) is mostly instrumental prog in the vein of Camel and Focus. Likewise Lethe made only one album, which is completely instrumental.

The opener 'Lethe' (5:37) is a very peaceful and mellow acoustic composition that focuses on the brightly flowing melodies of oboe, piano and acoustic guitar, seasoned with some birdsong. As the previous reviewer says, this one sounds quite a lot like the American folky fusion band Oregon, especially due to the oboe. The other three of the four tracks are 9-10 minutes long. 'Avbury Circle' starts in the similar slow-tempo mellowness before it turns faster and jazzier. Electric guitar and organ are involved in this jazz-rock/fusion piece, but the piano and the strong bass of Johan Saanen make me think of the rockier moments of Renaissance (e.g. on 'Ashes Are Burning').

On the two long pieces of the B side the Focus-style, chamber music flavoured symphonic prog elements are mixed with a jazz groove. On 'Cold in Fingers' guitar, keyboards and flute & other reeds step into the light in turns, and 'Le Tombeau II' proceeds dynamically in the early 70's style. Despite being released in 1981, there's certainly nothing reminding of the 80's in the warm, organic sounds of this charming obscurity. A CD reissue has been made, and the whole album can be listened to from YouTube also.

Matti | 4/5 |


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