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Breathing Space - Coming Up For Air CD (album) cover


Breathing Space


Crossover Prog

3.61 | 17 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Breathing Space have a considerable overlap with Mostly Autumn; Ian Jennings, Olivia Sparnenn and Liam Davison all being members of both bands. However, Breathing Space is a very different animal, being a far more jazz influenced, sophisticated "song" band than the Celtic folk influenced MA.

The first album was very much an Iain Jennings solo affair with back up from other musicians and tended to be rather keyboard dominated, but this is a true band effort with a nice balance. The songs are well developed and constructed, but don't expect any epics, all tracks being roughly in the 4-6 minute range.

Standout tracks are Time Tells all the Unknown, the slower and beautiful Don't Turn a Blind Eye and Head Above the Water, which features some excellent sax playing from John Hart. There isn't an unpleasant or duff track anywhere in sight. Mark Rowan contributes some fine guitar solos and Iain Jennings fills in all the gaps with his usual consummate ease on keyboards. Olivia Sparnenn has a really fine voice and a considerable stage presence to boot.

Whether it's really prog or not is debatable. It's not particularly ground breaking or adventurous, but it's very well played and composed. I'd class it as marginal for inclusion as prog, but it's a damn fine album. I was lucky enough to see them play the whole album live in York and enjoyed it immensely. It's not going to appeal to death metal or avant fans, but to those who like melodic, sophisticated, slightly jazz-rocky songs with great musicianship and female vocals, check it out.

Hercules | 4/5 |


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