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Mostly Autumn - For All We Shared CD (album) cover


Mostly Autumn


Prog Folk

3.51 | 131 ratings

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3 stars I started listening again this album, which I purchased in 1999 from Cyclops, after I listened to AYREON "The Human Equation". HEATHER FINDLAY of Mostly Autumn appeared as guest vocal, played her wonderful role as "Love". What an excellent performance she did, for example in DAY THREE: PAIN. Love: "I can't accept this, we will find a way / Out of this cesspool of doom and dismay / Beyond this dejection there's beauty and grace / A glorious future we long to embrace". I like her singing style and voice. So I grabbed this album of Mostly Autumn. I think in this debut album she doesn't play a role as lead vocals for all tracks.

This album is heavily influenced by PINK FLOYD, STEVE HACKETT and FOCUS. However, Mostly Autumn's music is different - it's more on folk-based music with some ambient, psychedelic and symphonic flavors. If we typically listen to soft keyboard sound with PINK FLOYD, the band chooses to use violin instead without losing the intended output. Their music is overall accessible to most listeners. It has a relatively minimum high and low points and or it's relatively flat, minimum or even no tempo change.

The album starts with a medium tempo track "Nowhere To Hide (Close my Eyes)" with a pop touch. The track starts with a sort of a-capella followed by guitar fills in the vein of Hackett. It then flows smoothly in a rhythm based music with medium tempo and relatively flat in terms of variety of melody. The rhythm section behind vocal line is dominated by acoustic guitar with some accentuation of keyboard sounds. There is a nice transition between vocal line in the middle of the track with stunning keyboard sound performed in relatively short period.

"Porcupine Rain" opens with a spacey music with repeated guitar fills which luckily is not long enough before we really get bored. The music flows smoothly in the same vein of first track. The band tries to demonstrate the symphonic nature of this track thru the use of keyboard that is played softly at the background. It's an enjoyable track. Again, it's relatively flat; minimum high and low points.

The third track "The Last Climb" starts with bird sounds (as we are in the middle of the a jungke) and exploration of guitar and keyboard (softly played). When the vocal line enters the music, it reminds me to FOCUS singing style. However, when the music enters its body, it creates a psychedelic nuances with an intense FLOYDIAN style. The interlude with violin solo is really great and it is followed by guitar work in the veiv of GILMOUR but bit softer. For those of you who like Floydian sort of musical piece, I guarantee you would definitely enjoy this track. It's COOL man.

The fourth track "Heroes Never Die" starts with a soft music intro similar (even almost the same) with the opening part of "Shine on You Crazy Diamond" but it's softer. The vocal line then enters the opening part before drumming. Structurally, it's different with "Shine On ." where the vocal line enters after drumming. Nothing special in terms of melody as it's so flat but we can easily notice the influence of FLOYD in this track. What surprises me, really, at the ending part of this track; it's very similar with the ending part of STEVE HACKETT song "Everyday" from "Spectral Morning" album. The guitar work sometimes indicate the influence of GILMOUR, but overall structure of ending part is really the same with "Everyday". Is it accidentally? Oh man . it's almost the same!

Next track "Folklore" is a traditional track of highlanders. It's dominated with violin / cellos sound. What's interesting is the intro part with a soft violin sound before it enters the "happy" part of the song. It's really a happy song that reminds me to a dance party in Scotland. The other part is on short solo drumming in the middle and followed by a musical segment that serves as an interlude because it's no longer in traditional mode. The interlude ends with another solo drumming before it returns to traditional melody.

The sixth track "Boundless Ocean" starts with an acoustic guitar rhythm with woodwind instrument. Very nice opening. It flows in a rather poppy style with acoustic guitar as main rhythm while keyboard is played to accentuate the bars. Woodwind is also used to enrich the melody. The interlude part in the middle is filled with woodwind and violin. It's an excellent interlude. While listening to this track, you may associate yourself in a long journey exploring the ocean in a boundary-less world. I think KENICHI OHMAE (Japanese globalization guru) should listen to this track; cause it may help him to create another excellent book on globalization.

Again, track 7 "Shenanigans" is another traditional music with an excellent work on violin instrument by Bob Faulds. It's composed in a relatively fast tempo with dynamic drumming to support violin in creating happy mood. It's a good track.

If other tracks were dominated by male voice, the eighth track "Steal Away" is performed by the band's beautiful looking singer HEATHER FINDLAY. It's a mellow track with an excellent melody. Honestly, the voice quality of FINDLAY in this track is below what she performed as "Love" in "The Human Equation" album of AYREON. It might be this song requires softer voice or it's a but for sure, for me, her voice is less powerful.

Track 9 "Out Of The Inn" opening part is a dialogue talk that reminds me to JETHRO TULL. It is then followed by a woodwind solo backed with acoustic guitar rhythm and percussion in a traditional music vein. It continues with solo violin. The music flows to upbeat track in a rocking mode when the drumming opens the gate for it; followed by a stunning electric guitar melody. It's nice. I do enjoy this track; it's uplifting.

The concluding track "The Night Sky" is probably the epic track as this is the longest track this album has. For those of you who love PINK FLOYD, this track is for you. It starts with a mellow part with great male voices and some backing of female voice. It flows nicely with great transition piece exploring violin sound. The violin solo backed up with an atmospheric nuance is really excellent. It is then continued with a lead electric guitar in the vein of Gilmour (definitely!). I'm sure you will enjoy this part, it's so stunning.

Overall, I would rate this album with a three star (good but not essential) rating out of five. I enjoy the music very much. The fact that there is a close similarity and proximity (melody, structure and nuance) as I mention above with previous band (especially with Steve Hackett's "Everyday") has reserved me to give a four rating. But I believe that this is a good album for the band to move forward. For me personally, I would still buy the next albums of the band. Gatot Widayanto, Indonesia.

Gatot | 3/5 |


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