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The Flower Kings - The Rainmaker CD (album) cover

THE RAINMAKER

The Flower Kings

 

Symphonic Prog

3.48 | 339 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Usandthem
4 stars Well, The Flower Kings has always been a "love or hate" question. Some think it is ridiculous to use sounds from the 70's and their music brings nothing new, while others state they are the successors of prog giants like Genesis, Yes or Camel, and they succeed into sounding modern through their vintage influences. IMHO The Flower KIngs (TFK for short) are an amazing band: creative, eccentric and sometimes surprising. "The Rainmaker" is a good example of their talent.

On "The Raimaker", all the members shine: Roine Stolt (guitars, vocals) with his cool and soulful style, Hasse Froberg (Lead vocals, rythm guitar) with his powerful voice, Tomas Bodin (keyboards) impressive as usual, Jonas Reingold (bass) an incredible musician and even Jaime Salazar (or Zoltan Csorsz according to some sources, so who plays what on drums?). So what did TFK this time?

The first track "Last Minute on Earth" (which became one of the band's classic) brings us a beautiful answer. The powerful riff brings something a little new to TFK's universe before the magnificent Yes-like vocals comes in. Then all the band's genius is showed: ingenious and powerful instrumental breaks, bluesy guitars, cool organs, bass solos (in a Pastorius style), a folk section, jazzy parts with an intense groove... This is not surprising this song was one of their favorite in concert!

The two other long tracks "Road to Sanctuary" and "City of Angels" follows the same way of inventivity. The first one is maybe even more dynamic with its Emerson-like keyboards, while the last one is more appeased with beautiful vocals harmonies and impressive instrumental breaks. The three songs can form a trilogy about the life after death. A really brilliant work!

The other songs are good too but some just don't reach the level of the three epics. For example, "World without a Heart" is cool with its bluesy guitar, "Selene" a good ending brek with Ulf Wallander's saxophone solo and "Thru The Walls" a kind of strange atmosphere for TFK, but they bring nothing particulary new. But, there are good achievements in the other songs. For example, the title track with its lush climax and the impressive guitar solo by Roine Stolt is an highlight of the album. "Sword of God" is a cool heavy-blues tune giving a chance to shine to Froberg on vocals. "Blessing of a Smile" and "Red Alert" are pleasent instrumentals showing Bodin's ability on keyboards. The last song "Serious Dreamer" is beautiful and offers an excellent ending to the album.

So, all in all "The Rainmaker" is an excellent album, which offers some of the best TFK's moments but more dispensable work too (which is understable with a 76 minutes length). In fact, the only thing missing is more madness and adventurous spirit, the elements that made "Stardust We Are" and "Unfold the Future" masterpieces.

Usandthem | 4/5 |

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