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Pendragon - Passion CD (album) cover





3.73 | 517 ratings

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4 stars Pendragon was one of four bands with Marillion, IQ and Pallas that fought the music industry with progressive music flag in the early eighties. Marillion was the most popular from the four because they made a deal with major label, EMI, while the other bands did not. Despite that I have to admit that Marillion music was much stronger and solid compared to the other three bands. But that's the past. Today, the other way round the three bands are getting solid, consistent and better in terms of musical quality and performance while Marillion is the lackluster. Why? It's because Marillion does not have a solid music concept on their musical direction. They were the one who proclaimed as hero of neo-progressive music (a simplified form of symphonic prog) but lately the new singer, Hogarth, wanted to move from neo-prog scene. Unfortunately they did not know which paths they should take, and at the end they are half-way thru with Radiohead-like music, but with unclear direction. The result is a vulnerable standpoint in the kind of music they play. Yes they have Brave, Marbles but then what? They go nowhere. I think Marillion should rethink the way they make their music. Sorry guys .. I have to tell you the truth because I WAS a die hard fan of Marillion (my name was printed in pre-order of Marbles) and want you guys to get up: make a better music, do not sleep too long.

Let's look at the other three bands. IQ is getting solid and better with their albums. Pallas is having its XXV album that sounds excellent as well. And Pendragon is excellent with this latest release: Passion. In fact, Pallas and pendragon new albums (2011) have heavy tracks like the opening track of this Pendragon's album. And let's have a look on Pendragon "Passion".

A solid album that flows nicely ...

I have the CD long time ago but had no time to write a review due to my profession workload. It was quite strange to me hearing the opening track Passion that sounded weird at first listen. Miraculously it grew on me and I started liking this track especially due to the shout that Nick Barrett say "Drop my balls?" which sounds something Pendragon had never done before I believe. The more I spin the CD the more I like this energetic and rockin' track with riff-based style. It;s really an interesting track.

It flows almost seamlessly to the next beautiful track "Empathy" (11:20) that starts in an ambient style, moves with a nice rhythm section. The tempo is basically medium with some spacey nuance in its opening. The limited power of Nick's better makes this track sounds nicely and very enjoyable. The track has a nice break with guitar fills and it provides good variation of style. The interlude sounds very nicely especially when it is combined with Barrett's voice. The music changes style many times but it still maintain good coherence as a whole.

"Feeding Frenzy" (5:47) starts with a soft guitar fills and bass guitar followed with keyboard. After mellow introduction for approximately 1 minute it moves to heavier music. I salute these guys as they are getting old they still maintain a song with this kind of speed. "This Green And Pleasant Land" (13:13) opens with a guitar fills and keyboard that remind me to the parts of King Crimson "Lizard" album even though do not exactly the same. It's another excellent track. What I like about this track is the ending past that has heavy music with relatively fast tempo. It's really excellent. "It's Just A Matter Of Not Getting Caught" (4:41) is a mellow track. But the music turns heavier and faster in terms of tempo with the sixth track "Skara Brae" (7:31) - another interesting track. The album concludes with a mellow track "Your Black Heart" which actually a mellow track and should not be placed as concluding track.

Overall, this is an excellent album. I have been listening to this album many times but I still like to play this album in its entirety. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Gatot | 4/5 |


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