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Asia - Silent Nation CD (album) cover




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3.11 | 159 ratings

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Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer
3 stars First of all I want to state that the only reason why I donīt give this album a 5 star rating is the fact that there is little prog on it. If PA was a hard rock or AOR site this would be halied as a classic, no doubt. Not that I approached this CD with reverence. Not at all. in fact I had much prejudice for it. To me, Asia was Steve Howe, John Wetton, Carl Palmer and Geoff Downes. The simple thought of an album carrying Asiaīs name with only Downes as a original member sounded too much a sell out for my taste. Thatīs why it took it so long for me to even listen to it. Now I have to eat humble pie, as they say.

I was impressed from the moment I first heard the CD. And the more I listened the more I got the feeling that it was not only excellent, but also it could be par to any of the bandīs best, except maybe the first (well, that one has a little more prog in it, hasnīt it?). I also found Bill Payneīs voice very similar to Wettonīs. The guy is a fine singer. But nothing would work so well if it was not for the fine songs included on this album. This is probably Asiaīs best compositions since their debut: inspired, strong, darker than usual, very convincing. Also there is a kind of īback to the basics` feeling on it: that might explains why Downes plays a lot more Hammond organ here than he was doing up to then. The guitar parts are also very well done and very 70īs sounding.

Production is also top notch. The arrangements are very well done, of course. There is not a single filler in the whole album, and the traklist is very balanced. There are even some novelties like the gregorian chants used on Darkness Day. Itīs hard to point a highlight since there are too many good songs on it. Every time I hear it it I donīt skip one track.

Silent Nation stands as darker and edgier album than one would expect from a band like Asia. But it is also very melodic and tasteful. If you like good pop rock with prog influences, or is just an AOR fan, you should not miss this one. I heard this CD is the best from the Bill Payne era and I believe it, even thouhg I havenīt heard the others. And it is one of Asiaīs best, with or without the classic line up we all love. As I said before, I can not give it the 5 star rating I was thinking of here on PA. For this site a 3,5 star is quite fitting though. A (very) nice surprise.

Tarcisio Moura | 3/5 |


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