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Magic Pie - Motions of Desire CD (album) cover


Magic Pie


Symphonic Prog

3.84 | 291 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars Norway has been known in the recent past for some heavy music like progresssive metal, doom metal or straightforward metal, true progressive rock is not so popular, unlike their Swedish brothers. But that will certainly change with this debut album, because you won't find anything more progressive than this 'Motions of Desire'. Even prog icons like The FLOWER KINGS and SPOCK'S BEARD have changed direction, their 'die hard' fans are not happy at all with this situation. Maybe those fans should open their minds, because MAGIC PIE picks up the pieces, where the aforementioned bands have left it. Their music holds the middle between symphonic rock of the seventies and modern neo-progressive influences. This band can already get the title of 'revelation of the year 2005'.

Founded in 2002 they initially played a lot of covers, but they were far more ambitious. If course, you can hear a lot of influences from the recent and not so recent past, but the compositions are very inventive and inspired. Lead guitar player Kim Stenberg is without any doubt the driving force behind the group, next to his brilliant guitar playing he is also responsible for most of the compositions, production, mixing and even the artwork. But this is certainly no guitar album, on the contrary, because especially the 'vintage Hammond' and synthesizers of Gilbert Marshall give the music that extra progressive dimension.

The epic of 20 minutes 'Change' illustrates perfectly where it's all about for MAGIC PIE, you get everything you could expect from a progressive track. The interplay between guitar and keyboards is very characteristic, the vocal harmonies and the numerous tempo changes are making this track an absolute masterpiece and already the first highlight on the cd. But don't think that the music always stays 'gentle', because very often it gets a lot heavier with riffs, that may be compared to DEEP PURPLE and ATOMIC ROOSTER. You can hear some acoustic jazzy fragments as well, in fact it is nearly impossible to describe entirely this track, there are so many different music styles. And there is still almost one hour of music to come, too much you should you think, but they succeed to keep this same high level throughout the entire album, one could ask if they will ever be able to equal this.

'Motions of Desire' has clearly a MARILLION feeling (also vocally), with a catchy keyboard riff, a dreamy guitar solo and beautiful vocals (the two lead singers are very complementary). Just like the first tracks 'Full Circle Poetry' starts with ambient sounds, it has some BEATLES influences, but it reminds more of earlier SPOCK'S BEARD or other TRANSATLANTICS. 'Without knowing why' sounds a bit heavier and is a bit different from the first part of the album, although the synthesizers always add that progressive 'touch'. But just listen to the extraordinary guitar solos of Stenberg, he may easily be compared with the other Scandinavian guitar masters.

Illusions & Reality Part 1 starts a bit folky (flute) and very gentle, but it continues into 'heavy progressive rock', especially Part 3 (where is Part 2?) is more into progressive metal (with a touch of DREAM THEATER). 'Dream Vision' ends the album right where it started, unequalled musical diversification, complex but yet accessible.

It came across my mind to give the maximum score to this album, but the production can certainly be improved, the only minor point, easily to work around in the future. This album will certainly be in many lists at the end of this year, seldom you will hear such an amazing debut album. Buy this stuff!!

My rating: 9,5/10

Review by Claude 'Clayreon' Bosschem

Clayreon | 5/5 |


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