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


Various Artists (Label Samplers)


Various Genres

3.69 | 24 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars I still had an old debt to pay to our kind progfriend Dan Britton. Like to more of us he sent me the sampler asking for a small favour in return to give my opinion about it. One of the bands on this sampler I was recently already familiar with being Deluge Grander. Unfortunately I have to say this band isn't 100% my cup of tea; even though there's unmistakably lots of quality within the bands compositions and musical execution, the approach they chose isn't quite my preferred one.

Like is the case with more bands on Emkog the melodies aren't really straightforward and that's after all my prerogative. Nevertheless the music is enjoyable if I decide to be more open minded and try not to let it get to me too much. What I do like on this sampler is the overall instrumental path the bands went for. If I have to chose between vocal and instrumental I pick the second option so in that case you're in for a treat with Emkog.

Birds and Buildings made quite a bit more impression on me than the already mentioned Deluge Grander, although I wasn't really pleased with the distorted sax around the 5:30 min. mark (2nd track). When the sax played the more jazzy parts I really loved it. All over Everywhere is the one band here that does work with (female) vocals. The music is pretty laid back and creates a fine atmosphere. But somehow the music also of this band fails to really click with me. The compositions aren't very spectacular more somewhere between good and very good. Cerebus Effect is the least represented band with just one track. Hard to give an ultimate opinion about them but the one track I can judge about is again not truly straightforward, it sounds a bit messy, fast play for sure but you will have to be able to handle the slightly more complex stuff. Good but not mindblowing once again.

And that's what my ultimate opinion (and rating) will be: good, but debatable essential I would say. This is significant contemporary prog in my opinion but it lacks appealing melodies that move me in some way. Anybody who believes in contemporary prog though should check this out to see what's in store nowadays. Emkog is essential in that case. Three stars (3,25).

progrules | 3/5 |


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