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Corvus Stone - Corvus Stone CD (album) cover

CORVUS STONE

Corvus Stone

 

Crossover Prog

3.90 | 158 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Kati
5 stars Corvus Stone's self titled Album Corvus Stone

I am writing this review as a music enthusiast, one who particularly enjoys and tends to focus on great instrumentals, mostly progressive music from the magic 70's to date; therefore I wish to share with you the listening experience this album has brought me.

This album surprised me entirely. I wish I could add a player to enable the reader to listen while reading this. I enjoy this album so much that I in fact feel guilty that others might miss out and never get to enjoy/experience it or hear the album. Believe me, I have shortened this review the best I could but it is still as long as The Sunday Times newspaper, therefore my sincere apologies. I feel this urge to express in the best way I can, my feelings about the music and share this wonderful album with everyone.

This album is difficult to summarize in one single paragraph. All 21 tracks are very different from each other, so many different styles, therefore I will try my best to describe each song in my own words, my feelings and these hopefully will be articulate enough for the reader to understand what this album has brought to me, in terms of the wonderful music journey it took me and the listening experience I felt.

1. The curtain rises: Not sure how to describe this track in an articulate manner, short and sweet, starts with an intriguing middle eastern sensual wavy mystical eerie tune, then it flows into the Latin feel and when the acoustic guitar kicks in it reminds me of the Godfather movie tune.

2. October Sad Song: This has that jazzy fusion "proggy" feel. Oh yes easy listening, most relaxing, this makes my toes move up and down, my head turn side to side moving and changing direction from one shoulder to the other and back, a great jazz vibe, piano and guitar great lead and response interaction, lovely "tum tum..", bass sound and constant piano keys, great keys, sounding "blub blub?" while also adding another sliding "weehee weehee?" sound above it somewhat higher notes, meanwhile the keys keeping a perfect rhythmic singing tune, varied in levels going up and down. Almost feels like each one is giving the other a turn to sing, starting at 2min14 section is haha, just perfect the guitar and the keys doing a duet, giving each other the stage, each one having their own turn, the perfect combination of lead and response. The other guitar sings so beautiful in the background. This track is so good that one follows the guitar way at the back meanwhile moving in a rhythmic way accompanying the bass and keys.

3. Highway to emptiness Both October Sad Song and Highway to Emptiness if one could describe it to someone who never heard these two track before; I could relate them to Mountain Queen by Alquin, maybe. However, this one has a heavier style maybe. Twenty Sixty Six 2066 & Then - Reflections on the Future (1972) ? reminding me of jazz fusion Krautrock style This track has the same jazz feel as October Sad Song yet it's funkier I cannot sit still here, killer bass by Petri Lindström, the guitar is jamming through this one, then Pasi Koivu's keys kick in, the tune is very catchy too. The instrumental changes and responses are excellent; at times the key tunes even feel/remind me of the Mission Impossible Movie Score.

4. Ice King: This is a sexy track!!!!! Very oriental and mysterious feel, especially the keys, Blake Carpenter's smoky vocals add to the whole mystique and dreamy eerie vibe, I hear the bass, while the Spanish guitar flows in the background adding to the whole atmosphere meanwhile the other guitars taking you to other levels. The "tink? tink.." funny sound constantly spaced in between this track is just perfect, effective for one not to dwell too deep into the each section of the song. Stunning track!

5. I'll leave it all behind: Haha? this is such a fun track! The album is picking up speed now, reminding me of those 80's tv series sound tracks. i.e. Starky and Hutch. Fun and funky to listen to. After listening to the previous songs, this one is a wakeup call, a bouncy happy one. My head is bouncing here, the best description of my head movements while listening to this song, would be one that of a Hawaiian doll with the big bubbly bouncy head, those holiday souvenirs that one glues onto a car's dashboard and voila it goes into "tic toc?" mode, bouncy and happy.

6. Corvus Stone: This one for me is the ultimate masterpiece of the album. Very complex, great key changes, spot on stops and starts. Beautiful and stunning as the track starts with a strong bass with Colin Tench's guitar twiddling and bleeding softly behind while other guitars flow above it. When the keyboard kicks in it starts a duet with the guitar, as it progresses, it turns into a faster tempo, brilliant keys here with great soft guitar riffs. Sudden but perfect timing stops spot on, the keys producing a whistling tune while the guitar accompanies those with his own replies. Very deep jazzy yet spacey, if one could describe it this way. Piano and violin beautiful, touching all our senses and the bass is subtle but constantly present here. At 6min9 the guitar softly takes the lead with the violins and piano, this becomes most stunning!!! At 7min23 it gives you a sad feeling very emotional because it's so beautiful, sensitive.

7. Moron Season: Perfect track to come next, although my body moves with the keys, my mind follows the guitar while Blakes vocals are very soothing before they turn into Lucifer singing in my left ear and Gabriel on the right, both vocals and guitars accompany each other so well, oh and all of a suddenly whoohaaa?. it picks up speed and becomes a fast paced joyride. Those crazy keys and the bass response is excellent, right towards the very end I heard a bit of Smoke on the Water guitar.

8. Horizon: This track is just too cool with a happy vibe and a jazz "jabadabadoo pririripipi?.", tune. Perfect element in terms of timing, everything is spot on. Again I must add, the tempo is perfect bouncy and spot on here!

9. Intermission: This one begins exactly like roundabout by YES! Then it continues with a Spanish guitar flavor.

10. Moustaches in Massachusetts Oh yes this one feels very Santana, early Santana. Love how it calms down and picks up speed again. Great Latin flavor yet it keeps constantly progressing. Or even Camel with The Final encore: great bass guitar heavy middle section and goes back into great Santana guitar mode, climbing several levels.

11. Pilgrims: 110% Prog! This song starts with the ?. "awww and the aaaah's?..", feeling of the gentle guitar weeping and taking us into a fabulous ride of flowing tunes blending perfectly into each other. This is very Steve Hackett!!!!! Keyboard sounds very Hammond. And towards the end the end it calms down and starts again with the guitar making most memorable licks, those beautiful tunes singing to one another, building up again from there. This last part makes my head pick sides, while paying attention to the various tunes, also perfect intervals and balance.

12. Jussipussi: This is the marmite track of the album, most eclectic, either you absolutely love it or you don't.

I love it! Makes me happy aha! Thank goodness I was born prior to doctors prescribing Ritalin, this track is hyper and should be enjoyed the max. This reminds me very much of Frank Zappa, unpredictable yet keeping one's "neuroids" interested and bouncy. This I could describe has the great fun, crazy, Bedlam Inmate Track of the whole album, hahaaha makes me laugh and happy, the bass here is what makes this work, pulling all those insane crazy and odd tunes together. As much as the track title might sound obnoxious (I find it funny), this is such a great and fun listening experience.

13. Iron Pillows: Strong keys here and the guitar follows that tune very well, less lead and response here but nonetheless, great overflowing instrumental sounds. This sounds like a live track.

14. After Solstice: The first thing that pops into my to mind is the amazing keyboard solo followed by incredible dibble and double kick drums. I think these are the best and least annoying cymbals I have ever heard! The guitar here does add great to the melody but it's the keys and drums what make this track stand out, they are exceptional good.

15. The Rusty Wolff Attack: Robert Wolff drum solo, oh yes these stereo drum solo rivals the best, including Chester Thompson and Phil Collins. Only one word comes to my mind; INCREDIBLE, that cowbell added here is great too!

16. Lost and Found: This starts with a marching drum and keys. Gives you a very patriotic feel, then the vocals start, beautiful and becomes more eerie, a bit Porcupine Tree maybe. The rolling of the drums and cymbals are great.

17. Scary movie: Perhaps my favorite song, this track is a bit heavier compared to others, no more Jazz feel in this track, it has a howling sound, having turned a bit darker mysterious, deep, wondering what next, demanding one's attention, a feeling like in the dark full of suspense and like a train is coming from the far end, great blend of intriguing sounds. I love the drum rhythm, the keys are demanding and make you wonder and feel what else is coming next, the guitar throughout this track is powerful; keeping that thrilling sense throughout, you can feel it building up from the pit of your stomach. This whole track does not stay just in your head you feel it starting from your upper torso. I hear a bit of Oh Well by Peter Green too.

18. Cinema: Changed my mind again, this is my favorite track, this one has it all, this song evokes/pulls out the best possible sensations in me, all sorts of sensations, warm, this has no many levels aaahhhh?. You can hear amazing Spanish/latin guitar scales, oh wow yes this track is indescribable really, it has the heavier parts yet it also has the most sensitive "awwwww heart touching" most sensual parts, that guitar, bleeds and sings most beautifully keeps you hanging looking for more, true meaning of perfect Legato. And the keys plus bass tune keep all the warmth. The last section is very Jeff Beck and Floyd, amazing bass in the middle section of this song. The middle section past 4min into the song, with that bass bubbling tune is a killer! This song goes from slow to picking up speed from perfect atmospheric to just incredibly marvelous sounding. When that guitar solo kicks in at 6min6 oh wow, I feel the most wonderful spike coming from my heart, I love this track!!! Yes that's the best I can describe it!!! The spacey and rhythmic whistling synths flying throughout this track also play a major role here!!!! Ah this has the most amazing highs and lows, the melodies, steps that keep going up and up and up?. up .. up? and without dropping that holding on to every note tension, comes back down with the most heart touching/grabbing yet sharp in the nicest hearing frequency, sensitive guitar licks to die for especially from 9min23 to the end?

19. You're so wrong: Black Widow song version, the guitars on this track were performed by the original Black Widow member and former Cressida/Odon of London, John Culley. John does one of the most beautiful guitars solos here at 2.03min, fabulous really, almost saxophone sounding. This is very 60's and might be the most fm radio friendly track of the album, most romantic even, as it has that sweet emotional side. The song composition is kept quite simple therefore not progressive when compared to the rest of the album however in this specific case, this is a perfect example how less is certainly more. This song is most stunning, beautiful; evoking the nicest sweetest sensitive feeling felt from your chest and building up while coming down, one could describe it as precious, giving you this feeling of love coming straight from within. The piano, flute and bass are the main tunes throughout this song. Simply stunning when the vocals start and when the harmonies kick in? oh my? you'll feel this wonderful liberating feeling. Great drumming by Victor Tassone, I especially like the wavy like tingling sound of the cymbals. Blake Carpenter blew me away with his vocal performance. In my opinion Blake is one of the best vocalists and this track certainly highlights the fact. I don't praise singers much, mainly because for me, to be honest, not many are good. This is a song that one tends to press replay immediately once it's finished.

20. The Ice King: (Instrumental)

21. Tench Inch Lisa: This song has a funny name with a short but sweet, Latin acoustic guitar tune.

Finally, to end my long "Thesis" on Corvus Stone; this album has a total 79 minutes of pure euphoric "moozik". I personally love the album length because when I get to the end, I can go right back to the start, replay the whole album and it will sound new, fresh and wonderful again :) giving me enough time for the tunes of the previous tracks in my head to have fizzled away thus I become completely amazed and excited by it all over again meanwhile continuing to discover new tunes which I previously never had noticed! =D This is truly a wonderful addition to anyone who appreciates music that takes you into to ultimate and fantastic musical journey. Most deserving of full 5 STARS!

Kati | 5/5 |

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