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Echolyn - The End Is Beautiful CD (album) cover

THE END IS BEAUTIFUL

Echolyn

 

Symphonic Prog

3.94 | 156 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Dan Bobrowski
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Echolyn keeps progressing, adding new twists and influences into their distinctive brand of Progressive Rock. The return of Tom Hyatt on bass adds flavor and a bit of funk as the rhythm section becomes more versatile and cohessive. A little popping bottom end opens the doors for the brass section that appears on a few tracks. The clavinet on So Ready screams of Stevie Wonder and even gives a slight taste of Superstitions. This may be their most eclectic outing yet.

It took about six full listens to unlock the complexities that at first don't sound all that tricky. Some of the tunes, on the surface, came across as simplistic and a kind of step back from the challenging compositions we've come to expect from this group. There are many multi-layered instrumental pieces that aren't audible at first due to the high production quality. I tried to follow a single instrument throughout, but got caught up in the fabulous melodies and intricate undercurrents.

Make Me Sway (Which you can download for free from their website) rocks hard with Ray Weston putting forth some pure anger while vocalizing about being lied to. So Ready follows in the vein of porous relationships. Arc of Descent: Dancing in a Motel just West of Lincoln finds Brett Kull singing a very disturbing suicide note with a somewhat dreamy, pretty melody that belies the message. A very dark, hopeless and sad painting of pain and dispair. Georgia Pines uses alcohol to dull the pain of never achieving the good life, the path to glory and happiness. The punchy rhythm, hammond melody and brass accompaniment are at odds with the harsh lyrics.

Chris Buzby really shows versatility on various keyboards, keeping the heavy subject matter bouyant with sweet instrumental punctuations. Paul Ramsey, highly underrated, drums up perfect counterpoint to the Tom Hyatt's lively bass lines. Ray Weston and Brett Kull sound very fresh and compliment each other so well vocally. Kull's guitar playing is as strong and consistently inventive as ever. Hyatt, Ramsey and Buzby also chip in with background vocals.

I can't say this is my favorite Echolyn release, but it will get heavy rotation with As the World, Cowboy Poems Free and Suffocating the Bloom. It is a grower, but should appeal to anyone who enjoys fresh, innovative progressive rock.

Dan Bobrowski | 4/5 |

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