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Argus - The Outsider CD (album) cover





3.89 | 8 ratings

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4 stars Argus is a Dutch neo-progressive group that started as a Wishbone Ash tribute group. When Frans Nooijen (keyboards, vocals) joined the band started working on new material. 'The Outsider' is the second album of this band. The band does offer those twin guitars and rockin' vibes we know from Wishbone Ash, but this is quite clearly a band in the tradition of early Marillion. Add some Pink Floyd if you will. The music also reminds me a bit of another Dutch album; Mangrove's 'Facing the Sunset' (also comes highly recommended). Atmospheric, melodic and a bit sentimental. You'll hear the music itself tell a story. The lyrics are about personal and societal issues. All six tracks are above the seven minute mark. The melodic rock guitar by Wim Wassenberg is proudly put forward during the song's most intense moments. The band has some nice psychedelic / symphonic interludes, like for instance on the opening of 'Visions' - a song that also has a grand guitar lead opening section. Often the synth sounds are spot on what I like in modern prog. Like many other bands Argus will try to write lyrics like those of Marillion's Fish and get a bit lost in singing about personal platitudes without the appropriate vocal theatrics/personality that legitimize such lyrics. Furthermore, I think the album could have been tighter by only printing the first three songs and the final track 'Breaking Chains', on which the band flexes its creative muscles most notably. Argus seems to prosper when the compositions are up-tempo, flexible and full of ideas and sound pallets - like on the dark opening track 'Depressed'. The album is available on cd and a double vinyl, which is nice! The production sound is quite pleasant, though the band does not benefit from the maximum impact good dynamic mixing has to offer. In conclusion, Argus delivered an album that really should further their career in the Dutch progressive rock landscape. 'The Outsider' has likely slipped under the radar of many readers here and I would warmly recommend trying it if you like symphonic and neo- progressive music. For instance on the website of ''. Rating is 3,5 stars.
friso | 4/5 |


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