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Yesterdays - Colours Caffé CD (album) cover

COLOURS CAFFÉ

Yesterdays

 

Symphonic Prog

3.52 | 18 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Katusnya
4 stars If their first album was compared to Camel and Yes, this second CD is more like The Beatles, Jellyfish, Supertramp, but don't get heavy with these comaprisons, it's just the mood maybe, the music is still original Eastern European thing and of course the Hungarian lyrics makes the music more unique and exotic if you like. The instrumentation is more electric, although you'll hear Penny Lane-like piano in the first song, the mellotrons are still there, hammonds and moog synths are all over the songs. Followers of Yesterdays may know that they have a new lead singer, Linda Horváth's voice is more powerful and colourful we used to hear on their debut. The lead voice is one thing, the other major difference is the use of flute. The new flute player, Gábor Kecskeméti does a great job on this album, he's a flute virtouso, in some places almost Ian Anderson-like. Talking about the differences, the bass sound is more prog on this second Yesterdays CD, Zoltán Kolumbán uses distorsions, heavy chous effects, octavers, and with these helps the band to reach a fine symphonic rock sound we used to hear from Chris Squier or Jonas Reingold of the Flower Kings.

After talking about the differences, let's talk about the music. If you're not afraid of good songwriting and you're not too much into endless symphonic instrumental intros, etc., than this CD is for you. I found strong melodies, catchy choruses with multiple vocals in each song.

"Játék" is like a nice interpretation of Penny Lane by Supertramp. It begins with a strong moog theme, a nice way to start a CD with. The chorus remindend me the richness of Yes' 90125 era vocal arrangements. The bridge part is 100% power-pop reminiscent of Jellyfish.

"Forog a tánc" continues the first song's dynamic structures with distorted hammond organ and Howe like guitar sound. Crunchy guitars, strong vocals and a powerful flute solo in the middle of the song. At the end there's a symphonic guitar solo by Tamás Mohai (ex-East) in 7/8 which leads into a crazy fusion drum solo accompanied by cold mellotron sounds.

"Éjszaka" is the first chapter of a 20 minutes long epic called "Némafilm Suite". The guitars at the beginning reminded me of Dream Theater's Pull Me Under. Interesting soundscapes, strong vocals once again. Nice "conversation" between the solo part of the synths and the guitar. The sensitive flute solo at the end leads into the epic's second chapter called "Némafilm". Wonderful female vocals by guest musician Karola Antal (of Tabula Smaragdina). Piano driven verses, multiple vocals and a Gilmour-like guitar solo in the middle of the song. The second part is something ethereal, reminiscent of the band's debut CD. This is not a suprise, it was written in the Holdfénykert era of the band in 2007. The third chapter is an electric pop song with arpeggiators, heavy distorted guitars and once again the colourful vocals of Linda Horváth! For me this third song somehow is not fitting into the concept of the whole, maybe the lyrics are the key why the band decided to "stick" this into the epic. It stands alone fine anytime.

"Tükör" starts with a clear hommage á Steve Howe (the beginning of And You And I). Strong flute work, dynamic use of 12 string acoustic guitars. This may sound like a Jethro Tull song, something like a very fast version of Life's a Long Song...

"Bábu" (puppet) is clearly a Jethro Tull inspired song, probably my favourite on this disk. I would like to hear more songs like this from Yesterdays. The instrumentation is odd: vox organs, an obscure analog synth and Fender Strats everywhere. In the middle of the song there's a combat between the flute solo and once again Tamás Mohai's jazz guitar sounds. I found this song the most powerful in Yesterdays' live performances this year. The studio version is ended just like a live version in a club, it has a "live ending".

"Flautoccatta" is a piece by the flute player, Gábor Kecskeméti. Four flutes were recorded poliphonically and they were accompanied by some Oberheimish synths and an acoustic guitar. This piece is like an introduction of the next piece called "Megpihensz", an acoustic song with emotional female vocals of Timea Stutz. The acoustic instrumentation gets whole with mellotron strings. Definitely a song from the band's earlier acoustic time.

"Zápor" can be some kind of hit song of this CD. Linda Horváth's lead vocals are powerful, yet very emotional and sensitive. The melancholic verses are followed by positive and harmonic choruses with multiple vocal parts. The song ends with a long guitar solo in the veins of Steven Rothery of Marillion, very melodical. If you are patient, you'll notice that the CD has a hidden track too...

After listening to the CD for several times I can say that Yesterdays is still the same band, regarding the moods, melancholic prog is all over, but this is not a bad thing. If you are into mood changes, catchy prog tunes with strong pop-like melodies, than this CDis your thing. Vintage symphonic progrock with powerpop taste (here and there). Even the sound is vintage, not only because the instrumentation, but the mastering. The album was mastered by Ty Tabor (of King's X, Platypus, The Jelly Jam, etc.), we all know that he is a big fan of The Beatles, it seems that in this case he adapted the Yesterdays material's final works according to his tastes.

Katusnya | 4/5 |

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