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The New Grove Project - Fool's Journey CD (album) cover


The New Grove Project


Symphonic Prog

2.89 | 22 ratings

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3 stars The New Grove Project (English translation of Nya Lund) was the name used by the duo of Per Sundbom (keyboards) and Ingemar Hjertqvist (vocals), who recorded some demo tracks back in 1984.Ingemar got married and moved to Switzerland and eventually these recordings saw the light in 1994 as ''Demo's'', issued in the limited sum of 300 copies.Ingemar tried to gather a band to re-record these tracks, but he was never happy with the result.Finally in mid-90's he was helped by Roine Stolt on guitars, Par Lindh on keyboards, ex-England drummer Jode Leigh and bassist Andre Schornoz and 5 out of the 7 tracks made it to the album ''Fool's journey'' along with another two tracks, released on Hjertqvist's own label New Grove Music in 1996.

The sound of the past Swedish duo was quite daring for mid-80's, as the album has a typical Symphonic Rock flavor, deriving influences from the sound of KAIPA, GENESIS or AUTUMN BREEZE along with artists like PAR LINDH (not a surprise of course) or BO HANSSON.Grandiose at moments, softer and more melodic at the opening and closing parts of the arrangements, ''Fool's journey'' has this evident vintage sense to guarantee a nice old-school listening.The keyboard work of Lindh is excellent with plenty of Mellotron throughout along with strong organ parts and bombastic synths.The guitars of Stolt are lovely and easily recognizable with all these bluesy riffing and melodic hooks, not unlike what he was playing with THE FLOWER KINGS or recent KAIPA around the time.There is some fine balance between instrumental blow-outs and mellow vocal parts, with Hjertqvist having a sensitive yet far from outstanding voice, and even a greater one between delicate symphonic flourishes and more complicated passages.However the album is not that original, hence there is a bit of deja-vu feeling by the end of the listening, as if you have heard every track in a previous album before.

Some very decent Symphonic Rock moments can be heard in ''Fool's journey'', a nice work of retro-sounding Progressive Rock with a couple of great guest stars.Do not expect monumental arrangements, but everything in here is certainly well-played with a few instrumental highlights here and there.Overall recommended.

apps79 | 3/5 |


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