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Moonlight Sky - I Am CD (album) cover

I AM

Moonlight Sky

 

Crossover Prog

4.32 | 4 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

maribor
4 stars Moonlight Sky is Slovenia's most popular progressive band, if that counts for anything. They're the only ones from this country really intent on trying to share their music with foreign audiences. Their first effort already had some success (voted for album of the month on one progressive website), but it also showed several weak points. I wondered if these issues would be addressed or if they would just continue where they left off. Luckily, the band came back much stronger and I Am is indeed a fine effort by anyone's standards.

The line-up for the follow up to the promising debut has stayed mostly the same, save for the new drummer, but he seems to have gotten into the role without any hitch. This stability has obviously born fruit because we can see a band that has gone forward and created a much more mature product than on their first try.

This effort is even more eclectic than the first album. The music goes through several styles (classical, jazz rock, hard rock, world music, eastern influences, soul, blues, etc.) and the guys effortlessly combine these styles as well. This gives them a sense of originality as a progressive band because it shows they're willing to explore new territories. They seem more convincing as a progressive band because of this. All of this sounds wonderful in theory, but for me the biggest proof that I Am is a great album is that I actually felt shivers down my spine on more than one occasion. This was mostly during the great guitar and keyboard passages and to my surprise also during some vocal parts as well.

The ability of the musicians has never been a problem, not even on the first album. They're all great players. The keyboard players shows a vast array of knowledge and a huge choice of sounds, the guitarist excels both on electric and acoustic guitar, while the rhythm section is none the worse with the new drummer. I also enjoy the imaginative use of some guest musicians on strings, woodwinds and vocals. The strings and vocals are particularly effective.

The biggest problem on the previous release was the vocal department. I don't know how Andraz Krzic did it, but the vocals seem to come from a different singer this time round. He does really well on the heavier passages, where his voice is strained and on the calmer segments as well. He actually sounds like he belongs behind the microphone.

Moonlight Sky have made a vast improvement from the self-titled album with I Am. All the major issues seemed to have been addressed, particularly the vocals and this seems like a work of a really mature band. I Am shows that Moonlight Sky is a band that's capable of really good music. The progress from the debut is remarkable and if they continue on this path we could have a true Slovenian gem of progressive music on our hands in a few years. Well done guys! I'm glad I didn't have to write a negative review again.

maribor | 4/5 |

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