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Mars Hollow - World In Front Of Me CD (album) cover


Mars Hollow


Crossover Prog

3.70 | 71 ratings

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3 stars MARS HOLLOW took only one year to release their sophomore album. It features seven songs with a length of 48 minutes. If someone wants to have a clue about stylistical similarities, I would name Presto Ballet, IZZ or Kansas, but please don't take this too seriously. They sound rather unique, to make it clear. Musicianship is great overall, especially bass player Kerry Chicoine and guitarist John Baker who are excellent vocalists on top of it. Keyboardist Steve Mauk acts a bit restrained, others will say not overpowering. Jerry Beller's drums and the bass guitar fairly complement each other and care for the necessary drive.

So the band play very compact and lively. There's some room for (short) instrumental solo excursions either. That said both guitarists have their special moments on the excellent epic Walk On Alone which lyrically seems to reflect some relationship problems. Voices convinces me with its special sense of melody and a strong symphonic appeal. 'Weapon in my hand' ... the following song showcases a catchy refrain, evidently dedicated to appeal to a regular rock music fan with hit potential? No, I won't say that this ever was their intention because this is combined with a tricky structure to something entertaining moreover.

World In Front Of Me is the second to cross the ten minute mark, again provided with a catchy refrain. Overall this comes close to the Flower Kings somehow, keyboards are prominant, great dynamics, some groovy parts - a nice workout. This album has become shorter as the debut, in any case a proper effort from this US quartet, as for the initial three songs and the title track substantial really. Symphonic and AOR elements are nicely put together in order to reach for highly melodic songs. Billy Sherwood has a finger in the pie here when it comes to the production - 3.5 stars

Rivertree | 3/5 |


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