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Proto-Kaw - Before Became After CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.89 | 153 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars PROTO-KAW are of course the first incarnation of KANSAS that never did release an album. Thankfully they did record some demos and there were some live recordings all of which were released under the title "Early Recordings Of Kansas-1971-1973". I am a huge fan of that album, and in fact played it about a month ago. It has such a VDGG / KING CRIMSON flavour to it and is experimental at times too. So when "Before Came After" came out I was really hoping for something similar to these demos and live tracks. Maybe I was expecting too much, after all it's been over 30 years, my fear was that they would try to be more like KANSAS and focus on melody and catchy tunes and lose that VDGG / KING CRIMSON spirit. My fears were met with this album. I still enjoy it but it doesn't compare to those early demo tracks and live songs. Not even close.

"Alt. More Worlds Than Known" is a good track with organ and guitar early as the vocals come in, then the sound gets fuller. The long instumental section is my favourite part of the song. It's pretty intense late. "Words Of Honor" features reserved vocals, flute and strummed guitar before organ, bass and drums join in. "Leaven" is led by the drums early as spoken words come in. It's heavier before 1 1/2 minutes. Organ a minute later. It settles with vocals and piano around 3 1/2 minutes. Heavy before 5 minutes. Themes are repeated.

"Axolotl" has a laid back with vocals. Both get fuller as contrasts continue. Flute later and some nice guitar to end it. "Quantum Leapfrog" is different from the rest with the lighter vocals and synths. "Greenburg, Glickstein, Charles, David, Smith And Jones" is a lot of fun. "Gloriana" is one I can't get into. "Occasion Of Your Honest Dreaming" is a catchy tune. "Heavenly Man" has some enjoyable guitar and organ when the vocals stop. "Theophany" opens with piano, organ and drums standing out. A change after 2 minutes. Vocals a minute later. It's brighter and more uptempo before 5 1/2 minutes. Sax joins in after 7 minutes. This is good.

KANSAS fans with miss Walsh's vocals and the violin but the music i'm sure will appeal to you. Good album.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |


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