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The Minstrel's Ghost - The Road To Avalon CD (album) cover


The Minstrel's Ghost


Crossover Prog

3.74 | 83 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
3 stars I have tried very hard to appreciate this album. I was first directed to it with a comparison to Rick Wakeman. Now Blake Carpenter is a fine keyboardist, but Rick Wakeman he is not.

The good parts of the album: well first, the band is quite proficient. Carpenter has a flair for full, moody synth patches, similar to Pink Floyd's Richard Wright at times. He even sound like he's occasionally paying homage to Wright, particularly on The Journey Begins and A Love Betrayed. And the guitar solos are aurally perfect. Most of these were played by Colin Tench, who recently made my ears very happy on the debut Corvus Stone disk.

But the album as a whole just fails to keep my interest. First, the composition throughout is lacking. The central theme of the music is built around a piece called Avalon, a drab four-chord 4/4 number with sometimes cringeworthy lyrics. Having this piece played three times (not including a 15 minute bonus version - ugh) brings us to tedium.

Second, nearly every song is played in a similar low-key timbre, every bit in that same 4/4, with only a nice drum solo at the beginning of Camelot and an up-tempo version of the aforementioned Avalon to get your blood pumping.

Third, aside from Tolkein based themes, is there any other topic more overdone than King Arthur? Oh well.

I may have been overly harsh, because I find the album at least workmanlike, and not without some merit.

Evolver | 3/5 |


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