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Eclipse - Jumping from Springboards CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.95 | 37 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars The Brazilian group Eclipse started in the mid-90's as a Pink Floyd tribute band. This sole album has been reviewed here only three times; 13 years since the latest review, so it's about time to give it exposure again. The band name with its Dark Side of the Moon reference really isn't the most original. In ProgArchives there's also a Canadian Eclipse from the 70's, expectedly inspired by Floyd.

Anyway, the happy news is that this symphonic and rather retro-sounding prog is a LOT more diverse and exciting than the average -- and, in the end, pretty common -- Floyd-influenced neo prog. In fact, the whole Floyd connection becomes completely insignificant concerning this album. The 11-minute opener 'Urban Hermit' alone is very fascinating and offers associations to several classic prog bands without actually sounding very closely like any of them. The symphonic structure has some YES, some CAMEL, some GENESIS (all in their prog prime), and the combination of mellotron sounds, flute and acoustic guitar may also bring the mellower parts of the King Crimson debut in mind. The guitarist Aloísio Campelo is rather mediocre as a vocalist, but he nicely reminds me a bit of Stanley Whitaker of HAPPY THE MAN, another useful comparison to the music as well. A lovely additional ingredient is the bright female voice of Patricia Deschamps, mostly used in a vocalise style here. The lengthy instrumental section near the end is gorgeous with all the soaring melodies and a Camel styled electric guitar solo. Wow!

'Inca's Revenge' (5:46) is basically an instrumental featuring Patricia's beautiful wordless vocals here and there. Both the bass and the electric guitar have a certain Yes stamp on them, but not too openly. The fast and powerful melody patterns also have a slight RUSH feel. The beginning of the album's title track (8:30) sonically makes me think of The Yes Album's 'Perpetual Change' especially for the guitar riff, but the short synth solo that soon follows is pure Rick Wakeman. This song, happily entirely sung by Patricia, has some Canterbury-like jazz nuances. 'Mantiqueira' is a lively jazz-rock instrumental with the female voice again as an additional instrument. Good, but not among my favourites. 'Puzzles' is a slower and bluesier song with male vocals.

'Manic Waltz' is so quirky little instrumental that GENTLE GIANT must be mentioned too. Perhaps the charm wears a bit towards the end of the album. The final instrumental piece 'Ritual' is rooted on a stomping rhythm (associated to the Apocalypse part of 'Supper's ready' and the similar section in Marillion's 'Grendel') over which guitar, sax and keys build steamy layers that aren't quite interesting enough to lift the piece from being a boring filler. For its best moments -- and there are lots of them, not just the fantastic opener -- this album would be a five-star gem, but I follow the concensus of the former reviewers and stick to four stars. Wish there were more flute -- from the guest musician Zé Mendes -- and a bit better male vocalist; though I also would have been perfectly happy if Patricia had handled all the vocals. Sadly the band never made another album.

Matti | 4/5 |


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