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Cirrus Bay - Whimsical Weather CD (album) cover

WHIMSICAL WEATHER

Cirrus Bay

 

Neo-Prog

3.50 | 63 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

snelling
4 stars With so many of the big names in prog releasing cd this year, it would be easy for this little gem to get lost in the shuffle, and yet musically this is as good or better than any of them, not a perfect album, but a quiet masterpiece all the same.

The album begins in classic symphonic tradition with the beautiful 'Circles and Seasons', an 11 minute melodic romp that probably surpasses anything from their first two albums. This song features some great vocal harmonies, amazing chord progressions and beautiful melodies that overall hearkens a bit of Renaissance, Genesis and PFM, but is mostly pretty original for symph. The Hackettesque lead over mellotron swells in the outro is sublime.

'Boundaries' follows, and I'm still digesting this one. Complex, and all over the place, and a right contrast to the pretty 'Wanderlust', with its beautiful vocal section followed by an upbeat instrumental section reminds me of Genesis' 'Inside and Out' in its layout.

'Awake Forever' is the only short track, but has a magical quality one only seems to hear in prog, even if they are doing a short song. A very endearing track, in spite of its shortness.

'Gathering Clouds' is the show-stopper though. This 7 minute instrumental sounds like a cross between Kerry Minnear and Anthony Phillips on acid, and sounds like progressive music that has actually progressed, without losing the stellar melodic content, while still being incredibly complex.

'Me and the Wind' is much different, sounding warm and summery, with a feel of summer soon to end. Some nice Hammond work here, as well as vocal harmonies. The instrumental section has a lot to offer.

Like 'A Step Into Elsewhere', 'Whimsical Weather' concludes with a 'One For The Vine' like magnum opus. 'Across the Cobblestones' is equal to 'Zenobia', the best track on 'Elsewhere', and has that feel, with those killer chord progressions and haunting melodies. Brilliant. A melody lover's paradise.

Hard to complete with all the great new big name releases this year, but up there with the best of them, in its own quiet way, is this lovely album, with some of the most heartwrenching melodies I've heard in years.

snelling | 4/5 |

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