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Rick Wakeman - The Seven Wonders of the World CD (album) cover

THE SEVEN WONDERS OF THE WORLD

Rick Wakeman

 

Symphonic Prog

3.23 | 22 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Andy Webb
Forum & Site Admin Group
Admin / Heavy Prog Team / Math Rock Team
4 stars It's the dawn of a New Age....... music

A historical (as most of his releases are) new age album, The Seven Wonders of the World is a creative piece born out of synthesizers and drum machines. The melodies are very relaxing, flying in and out of instrumental concepts about each of the 7 ancient wonders of the world. Each track is introduced by a narrator (Garfield Morgan), giving each wonder a short little bio before the instrumental track begins. For a history buff, it's nice to maybe learn a thing or two before being taken by Mr. Wakeman upon a great journey of synths and melodies.

The Pharos of Alexandria is easily one of the best tracks, using beautiful synth melodies to display the majestic lighthouse of Alexandria. You can visualize the light at the top shining brighter with each musical direction taken. The images that can flow out of the music is wonderful.

The Colossus of Rhodes is the next wonder explored. The track is a wonderful mesh of melody and interesting new age synth voices. The synth fret less bass is actually quite nice, despite the fact that it's synth and not real bass... But the monstrous statue is very accurately displayed through the music. A good track.

The Pyramids of Egypt are explored next. The track is a little weaker than the other songs, being very similar and not as rhythmically or melodically creative. Certainly the immensity of the pyramids are displayed, but the melody can drag over the 6 minute track.

The Hanging Gardens of Babylon is the next not so impressive track. The melodies are a little traditional, and not very interesting. The whole aura of the mystical Gardens isn't really portrayed very well by the music, either. A weaker track on the album.

The Temple of Artemis is a much more majestic track than the previous two, and returns to the full new age glory of the first tracks. The sweeping melodies really capture the essence of the famous temple. Creepy melodies and symphonic sections are placed strategically along the track, adding a nice flavor to the music.

The Statue of Zeus is next. The track has much more relaxed melodies and synth passages. The melody can get boring at times, but when it changes here and there, the track is nice to listen to.

The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, the final, massive (in relation to the album!) 11 minute track, uses the most relaxed, haunting, and beautiful melodies of the album. The song takes a little while to really get into the "trance" of the song. But once Wakeman starts to go up and down those keys, it's wonderful. Overall, one of the better songs on the album.

ALBUM OVERALL: The Seven Wonders of the World is definitely one of Wakeman's many overlooked gems of his dozens of studio records. It's new age, yes, it uses (sadly) a drum machine, yes, and EVERYTHING is synthesized, but it is still a beautiful album. The instrumental passages (their all instrumental....) are fantastic, really extending Wakeman's proficiency for fantastic music. However, some of the songs can be a little boring and redundant. Other than this however, the album is most definitely 4(+) stars!

Andy Webb | 4/5 |

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