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ON WATER

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Neo-Prog

4.00 | 14 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

progaeopteryx
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Product is the work of Arman Christoff Boyles (vocals, guitar, synth) and Scott Rader (drums, bass, guitar), plus several guests. Their debut release, On Water was released in 2000, and is a concept album based on a sailor's life during the American Revolution. Although this seems like it would be an ambitious pursuit, Product successfully pulls off a classic debut.

On Water has the feel of Porcupine Tree and Pink Floyd throughout, especially with regard to the acoustics, ambience, vocals, and sound effects. Occasionally I picked up other influences, like the beautiful acoustic guitar on Without You reminds me of Gabriel-era Genesis, Water Bodies reminds me of a looser Alan Parsons Project, parts of Eye for Eye have an industrial rock feel to them, and the last two tracks remind me of Marillion's Brave album. The lyrics are well written, and easily convey the emotions of sailors during this time in history. Although musically, Boyles and Rader are not virtuosos, the focus of their music is in the meaning they are trying to convey and the atmospherics that would fit the messages in this wonderful concept. It's more or a less a combination of quiet and loud parts, each used particularly well together for the sections of the concept that suit them.

I've heard people compare Boyles singing voice to Peter Gabriel or Steve Hogarth, but to me he sounds more like a mix of Richard Wright and Steven Wilson. The delivery is especially comparable to Wilson's. However, this is only a comparison, as parts of his overall vocal range I find to be unique. He doesn't have a great voice, but he does deliver the emotion needed. For this style of music, it fits nicely.

I can't find any weaknesses on this album and enjoy it very much. It's a very original concept, approached in a somewhat Floydian fashion. The production and mixing are very well done. I'm surprised that this debut has not received the accolades and recognition it deserves. Well worthwhile masterpiece and someday to be a future classic. Five stars.

progaeopteryx | 5/5 |

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