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Barry Cleveland - Hologramatron CD (album) cover


Barry Cleveland


Eclectic Prog

3.79 | 18 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

kev rowland
Special Collaborator
Crossover Prog Team
4 stars On this his fifth album, which was nominated for a Grammy in 2010, Barry has responded to contemporary social, political, and even spiritual realities, and has produced a modern-day "protest album" that draws inspiration from a musical continuum spanning art rock, psychedelia, avant-metal, ambient, global fusion, trance, and fun?with two early-'60s pop covers tossed in for kicks. He has brought together a fine group of musicians to assist him in producing his vision, so while he concentrates mainly on guitars of various types including synth guitars, this also involved his long-time collaborator Michael Manring (they were both members of the improvisational quintet Cloud Chamber), drummer and percussionist Celso Alberti (Steve Winwood, Airto Moriera), and pedal-steel guitarist Robert Powell (Peter Gabriel, Jackson Browne), along with "avant-cabaret" vocalist Amy X Neuburg, and guest vocalists Harry Manx and Deborah Holland (Animal Logic). Additional musicians include Turkish electro-acoustic guitarist Erdem Helvacioglu, percussionists Gino Robair and Rick Walker, and Michael Masley (also from Cloud Chamber).

I have played this album numerous times, each listening giving me even more, but for some reason the same question kept going through my brain, "How on earth am I going to write about this?". T is complex yet simple, cutting edge yet mainstream, prog and jazz and pop and rock. I mean, what on earth is going on? Years ago I read a very wise review, where the critic said that he was fed up of trying to fit music into pigeonholes and that in future he was going to put music into just two categories, namely "good" and "bad". Well, this definitely fits in the former and if anyone feels that it fits in the latter then I feel sorry for their musical tastes. I suppose one could describe it as art-rock, and Fripp has obviously been an influence, but musically it is all over the show. As with every recording he is involved with, Manring's warm fretless bass is a key to the overall sound seemingly at the heart of all of the layered complexity. This is such an easy album to listen to musically, with melodies in abundance, and a surprise around every corner. One of these has to be the version of "Telstar" which is just wonderful as the Sixties song is taken into a new age. Barry has written some books on Joe Meek and obviously this is his homage.

This is a great album, one that I have enjoyed playing immensely. Highly recommended.

kev rowland | 4/5 |


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