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Pallas - The Dreams Of Men CD (album) cover





3.99 | 280 ratings

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5 stars Well, well, well, what have we here? This release took me completely off guard. I had read other reviews on Prog Archives suggesting this was a fantastic release, but knowing all the other less-than-satisfying releases by Pallas, I was hesitant to purchase this. I wasn't even that impressed with The Sentinel, which many consider to be the best thing Pallas ever made. The Dreams of Men is really amazing, and maybe that's because I began listening to this with low expectations. Nonetheless, after repeated listens, it just got better and better to the point that I was regularly listening to this several times a week.

The first track, The Bringer of Dreams, starts off on the right foot with a lovely symphonic beginning with soft keys and then builds up into a powerful guitar riff backdropped with a majestic and melodic keys. Occasionally the vocals are overwhelmed by the instruments, but it's not anything serious to distract from this powerful start. It sometimes reminds me of Arena and has some nice guitar work. The second track, Warriors, starts off with a riff very much like something off of Yes' Relayer and has, like Relayer, has an energetic delivery. Here, too, Alan Reed's vocals seem to be overwhelmed by the instruments. Ghostdancers is about the stealing of native American lands by European colonists. It's an emotional and powerful piece with great guitar work, starting off with sad violins (a nice touch). The 11+ minute Too Close to the Sun has some great keyboard work from Ronnie Brown, showing strong Banks/Nolan influences and Niall Mathewson delivers a strong Gilmouresque guitar solo. An amazing song!

The fifth track, Messiah, has a really nice and catchy bass and guitar riff with another stunning solo from Mathewson at the end. Northern Star slows things down a bit with a soft guitar instrumental and lush keys in the background. It's a pleasant and dreamy interlude. Mr. Wolfe starts off with some Emersonian-style piano, then kicks into high gear with a wonderful bass riff from Graeme Murray. Another great song! This is followed by Invincible, both powerful and emotional. To conclude the album is The Last Angel. Although this final piece lacks the energy of the previous tracks, it certainly makes up for it with it's strongly majestic feel and the beautiful angelic vocals of guest singer Pandy Arthur.

This one really blew me away and it totally surprised me because I had not been impressed at all with everything Pallas had done prior to this. The only weakness I can spot is that Alan Reed's vocals on the first two tracks are occasionally overwhelmed in the mix by the instruments. For me, with how good everything else is on The Dreams of men, that's a very minor setback that becomes unnoticeable by the time you make it midway through the disc. This is truly the best Pallas release, miles (or kilometers if you like) ahead of anything they had done previously. In my opinion, this is also one of the best neo-progressive releases ever, comparable not in style, but in greatness to Marillion's Script for a Jester's Tear, IQ's Ever, or Arena's The Visitor. A masterpiece and future classic, well deserving of five stars!

progaeopteryx | 5/5 |


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