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The Syn - Original Syn 1965-2004 CD (album) cover

ORIGINAL SYN 1965-2004

The Syn


Psychedelic/Space Rock

2.23 | 7 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

3 stars Pleased to see that The Syn have been added to the archives. I bought this album by mistake, thinking it was the new release (see Syndestructible); it's not, rather its a 2 disc collection of early recordings and more recent material. Disc 1 comprises the old, 60's stuff; with both Chris Squire and Peter Banks on many of these tracks, there's a clear thread leading into early Yes material. However be warned....some of the tracks are poor quality in terms of either song-writing ("Created by Clive", or "Flowerman", both of which are showing their age and frankly, are a little embarrasing to listen to); or production (several poor quality demos including "Gangster Opera" and "I Can't Explain" are included, presumably for completeness). There are some good moments - "Grounded" and "Cadillac Dreams" are strong Nardelli songs - but overall this disc is really is for completionists only.

Disc 2 is much better, featuring tracks recorded in 2004, all with Squire, Banks, and Nardelli, the original vocalist. "Illusion" is a new version of an early Nardelli/Banks number running to over 14 minutes, finishing with some great duetting between Peter Banks and Gerard Johnson on keys. It's the best track here, and the most deserving of the "prog" label. "Grounded 2004" is an updated version of the song on disc 1 but personally I prefer the original. One thing is that Steve Nardelli's has not stood the test of time well, he has been out of the business over 35 years, and it shows. The disc finishes with an extended version of "Time and a Word" - with Squire on vocals, who starts by speaking the lyrics; unfortunately it reminded me of William Shatner's "If"!! Things do get better - can't keep a good song down! - and the song is extended and re-worked into 3 movements.

The revised Syn, it should be said, is clearly Nardelli's project as much as it is Squire's. Sadly, Peter Banks departed after the 2004 recordings - a very bitter statement about what happened is to be found on his web-site (just type Peter Banks in your search engine!).

If it were just the first disc, this would be scored low, but the second disc justifies 3 stars.

Phil | 3/5 |


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