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Gary Hughes - Once And Future King - Part I CD (album) cover


Gary Hughes


Progressive Metal

3.51 | 14 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars I don't know how many times the legend and myths of King Arthur or someone from his entourage were used as subject for a concept album, but I sure can't count it on one hand. This rock opera is, as you could guess, also based on this story. The whole story has been divided on 2 CD's. The first part will be available on August 25th and part two on October 6th. I already received both promos, so I can give you an overview.

"Once and future king" is a rock opera that completely answers all the expectations you get when you hear the word 'rock opera", including the cast. The big names of the participants make sure that this CD will not pass unseen to the public. But the quality of this album is very high, so you have more than one reason to buy this CD's.

I've always been a passionate fan of concept albums with the necessary theatrical bombast, heroic epics and nice ballads with a guitar solo as climax. And this album has it all. All melodies and choruses are pleasant to hear and can be sung along after a few times. A short overview: "Excalibur" opens part one as a movie soundtrack with some keyboards from rock opera specialist Arjen Lucassen, better known as Ayreon or Star One. It changes into a rock track sung by Damian Wilson. "Dragon Island Cathedral" is a rock song by Gary Hughes as Arthur. Very beautiful keyboards. The first semi-rock ballad "At The End Of The Day" is one of the highlights of the CD. Both vocalists Gary Hughes (as Arthur) and Lana Lane (as Guinevere) take this song to unknown heights. A very strong track with ditto guitar solo and community singing. Danny Vaughan (Tyketto) is Lancelot on "The Reason Why" and "Avalon", which both have a catchy melody line. Irene Jansen (Karma) as Morgana makes it clear that a woman can stick up for herself on "Shapeshifter". "King For A Day" is carried by medieval keyboards and the grotesque "In Flames" with Bob Catley (Magnum) as Merlin are both tracks that stay in your head. There's a wonderful organ sound on "Sinner" with Sean Harris (Diamond Head) as Galahad. Part One closes with 'Lies", a track with a lot of driving power and Gary Hughes as Arthur.

see part 2

Clayreon | 4/5 |


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