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Various Artists (Label Samplers) - Emkog Sampler CD (album) cover

EMKOG SAMPLER

Various Artists (Label Samplers)

 

Various Genres

3.68 | 26 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

memowakeman
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Excellent introduction to Dan Britton's music!

We, as members of a recognized internet site like this, have the advantage and good luck of being visited by professional musicians who are willing to gain a place and recognition within the progressive rock realm. Some of those musicians, like is the case of Dan Britton, have added their grain of sand to this site, because thanks to their enthusiasm, we, the prog listeners can know music that was previously unknown to us.

I want to thank Dan for his confidence and kindness, and of course, for the music he and his friends have created and will create for long time, I am sure. Before receiving this Emkog sampler I was only familiar with Deluge Grander's debut which I liked since the first moments. That is why I was sure that the music here could only offer moments of pure quality, and believe me, I was right.

What this sampler offers is a short collection of Dan's different projects, songs that have already released, and even a proof of what is coming in the near future. This time I won't review song by song as I use to, but write some impressions of the different projects, and I'll do it chronologically. So first: Cerebus Effect. One song was taken from this project, "Nine against Ten" which can be found in their "Acts of Deception" album. Here I could appreciate a song with an odd and challenging sound, with excellent guitars and a fast rhythm that may remind you to some jazz/fusion monsters. Actually, after that fast sound the song calms down and turns sweeter yet still intense, seems that Mahavishnu Orchestra was an influence.

Now: Deluge Grander. Their first album "August in the Urals" was released back in 2006, and since then it has had a good reputation at least here in prog archives. Their second one saw the light just a year ago (2009), the title is "The Form of the Good", which is still unknown to me, but that will change soon. One song per album was taken for this sampler. "The Solitude of Miranda" which I also remember was free to download via last.fm, is probably the better known song from Deluge Grander. A composition that shows the musician's quality and skills, a song that proves that it is possible to make progressive rock at its highest nowadays. And "Aggrandizement", according to the back of the sampler this version was mastered differently than the album version and it is actually an excerpt, so I will have to get the album soon if I want to know the complete version. Deluge Grander's music is powerful, eclectic and bombastic, something that no one should miss.

Birds and Buildings shows probably the most complex songs of them all. Fast tracks whose intensity and tension will catch the listener since the very first second. Their debut album was named "Bantam to Behemoth" and released in 2008. From this record two songs were taken for this CD, "Birds Flying into Buildings" and "Yucatan 65", this last one is also an excerpt. And their second album is planned to be released this year (if we are lucky) if not the next year (2011). The music of this band at least from the song I can listen here, has a lot to offer: complexity, fast time compositions that may provide an ambient of tension; but in the other hand softer symphonic tracks whose atmosphere suggests tranquility and harmony. The early version of "Miracle Pigeon" is just a short proof of what some trained and talente musicians can do in a couple of minutes.

And finally: All Over Everywhere which seems that this is the softer or gentler project of them all. Their recently released album this 2010, "Inner Firmaments Decay" has caught the attention of more than one, and I am included in that list. Two tracks were chosen for this sampler, "Art of the Earth" and "Gratitude", both songs show the passion and musical education of the musicians involved in this project. The music is sweet, soft and beautiful, warm and friendly. But there is a thing I did not like, it is that the voice (female) sounds too far, it may have to do with the production I don't know, but seems far to me, like if it didn't belong to the piece, at least is how I felt it. Despite that, I am sure this band will succeed in the near future.

The last "track", is a compilation of Dan's future projects, as you can see, he is a man who lives for music and luckily for us, a man that creates great music. This twenty-minute track features pieces of Deluge Grander and Birds and Buildings next albums, but also shows the first steps of a new project: Elevator Machine Room, whose albums are planned for 2011 or 2012, and 2015 or later. A busy man working for the future of progressive rock, what else could we ask.

An excellent CD without a doubt, one of the most enjoyable samplers I have ever heard. Hope more people get it and as me, get the music of Dan's different projects, because despite being so different to each other, all of them are quality bands that will please any prog rock fan. My final grade is four stars.

Enjoy it!

memowakeman | 4/5 |

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