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Phideaux - The Great Leap CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.30 | 248 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Phideaux's 2006 release, The Great Leap, is part of the same trilogy as Doomsday Afternoon, but listening to the two back to back, one might be surprised to discover this.

Sure, the artwork is pretty similar in style, but the music - wow! What a difference! Where Doomsday Afternoon was close to Symphonic Prog in many ways, The Great Leap is in essence a guitar/song based album. Many of the elements that made Doomsday so great (rich texture, female vocals, high drama) are not featured as prominently in this album. If one listens, they will find hints of each of these aspects, but the core of each song here is guitar and Phideaux's own vocals (where, in his more recent ones, he's given a lot more space to female vocalists).

The surprising thing is that, while this album is carried by the guitar and vocals, it doesn't really feel like it's lacking anything as a result. For the type of music that is present on this disc, this approach works very well. The band is capable of creating a large range of sounds, from somewhat eerie, to wistful and angry - and, more than on the follow-up, just straight up hard-rocking. The lyrics are still great.

There are no bad songs on this album - each one has something unique that makes it stand out - but the tracks that stand out, in particular, to me are the bookends (Wake Up, You And Me Against a World of Pain at the beginning, One Star and Last at the end) with Rainboy being the best track in the middle of the album.

Listening to this album also adds value to the experience of Doomsday Afternoon - while stylistically, the music between the two is quite different, they are supposed to be part of a trilogy, and to the careful listener, there are links between to the two. For example, in Microdeath Softstar (off of Doomsday), there is a part where the female vocals sing "You ?. against them, you against them". This is a reference to the end of "You And Me Against a World of Pain", where Phideaux sings, "Will it be you, you, against them, will it be you, against them?"

Overall, quite a good album, much closer to rock than prog but enjoyable from beginning to end.

TheGazzardian | 3/5 |


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