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Rick Wakeman - Retro CD (album) cover

RETRO

Rick Wakeman

 

Symphonic Prog

3.03 | 41 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

KingBarbarossa
3 stars A welcome new effort from the grand master of keys. The previous reviewer rendered much of the details which I don't need to get into here. But I do have a few comments. One thing is that I very much like this effort getting all the old equipment out dedicate this album to the good old vintage sound. But as often, it yet again it seems that Wakeman does things a little half-hearted. Maybe also, because of being such a highly regard keyboard player the expectations are quite high. Anyway, the very opening part of the first track features a really awkward sound patch (at least in conjunction with how it is used) which will soon disappear but raises the question "why?". Then of course there is the old problem with Wakeman's leglection of decent drumming. I am sorry to say this but Tony Fernandez is not the right drummer in this environment and never was. His 80s drum sound (or cheap neo-prog sound at best) is uninspired and lacks dynamics. Often it sounds as if it could have been programmed - which for this being a "retro" album to me is a fatal flaw. Plus, the drumming clearly just ornates the overall performances instead of being the driving force for the rhythm - a cornerstone to built up a proper groove. One of my greatest wishes would be if Rick Wakeman would collaborate with a proper drummer with decent drum sound! So many unknown bands can do it, why not he? Of course, in kind of a selfish way I would wish that old buddy Bruford would some day show some mercy and come to the rescue... The last complaint would be the silly lyrics on "the stalker" which does not encourage much to be listened to a second time, a pity. But enough of that - Wakemans performance is highly enjoyable. "Homage to the Doctor", "One in the Eye" and "Can You Smell Burning" I would pick as personal highlights on this album. To me he still can make the analog equipment sing and i am sure this alone will be enough to make many fans happy. 3.5 stars.
KingBarbarossa | 3/5 |

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