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Brother Ape - On The Other Side CD (album) cover


Brother Ape


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.90 | 30 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars It has been mentioned already numerous times on this site, Sweden is certainly at the moment the epicentre of progressive rock, and with the guys of BROTHER APE they have another promising act. Their music keeps the midway between melodic progrock of SAGA and IT BITES, the nervous fragments of ZAPPA, jazz-rock and fusion mixed with AOR, in a nutshell the entire 'palette' has been delivered here on an ingenious and musical-technical perfect way. Don't let you discourage by the jazz influences, it's hardly present. Some people will have to get used to this style, sometimes it becomes even poppy or mainstream, but after several listenings it will grow on you and you will discover always new things.

"The Jerk" was free for download on the official site of the record label and illustrates perfectly the genius of the music of BROTHER APE, melodic progressive rock with enough complexity and a nose for composition, vocally on high standards and musically everything in balance. A track like 'Waiting for the sandman' seemed a bit too quiet in the beginning (maybe also because of the lyrics), but afterwards it has become one of my favourites, a ballad passing in the second part into instrumental CAMEL-esk prog. The heavy rocking 'I freak out' has a very catchy refrain, contains a beautiful guitar solo and is mainly driven by the rhythm section. "Railways" is also very original, a train driving through the landscape is simulated by using brushes on the snare drum. Beautifully sung, supported by bass, subtle keyboards and acoustic guitar are making this song very atmospheric and enjoyable.

Anyway, the entire album has a very nice mood, both musically and lyrically, heart- warming between all the other melancholic albums, that are being released in the circuit these days. Sometimes this album reminds, not by coincidence, at A.C.T. like for example the guitar play on "Clockworks", only BROTHER APE has a bit more to offer thanks to the diversity of the musical pathways, they tend to follow. On the acoustic ballad 'This Hour' it is obvious that singer Peter has listened very well to STYX, it's like you are hearing a 'young' Dennis de Young. After this romantic interlude (it came at the right moment) the speed rises in "Unaccomplished", where you can discover influences of UK, as well on guitar as on keyboards, while "Farewell Song" undoubtedly reminds of YES. A second fully acoustic but very short track introduces the longest one on the album, "On the other side". The beginning is surprisingly a mix of DIRE STRAITS and The POLICE, but after 2 minutes the tone is changing into progressive rock 'pur sang', with references to the seventies and contemporary neo-prog. Besides, you can hear, like in the "Farewell Song", that typical interplay between guitar and vocals, like we used to know from the early days of YES. Furthermore, the production and the artwork are excellent, thus this album is an absolute 'must', you have to give it the time to grow on you.

BROTHER APE is not really a newcomer, they have released some years ago an EP, but Progress Records has re-released it (and added some new tracks). After the promising debut of LIQUID SCARLET the Swedish record label has once again acquired a 'diamant'. I'm very anxious to hear these guys live, hopefully they will find the way to our country.

My rating: 9/10

Review by Claude 'Clayreon' Bosschem

Clayreon | 4/5 |


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