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After Crying - Creatura CD (album) cover

CREATURA

After Crying

 

Symphonic Prog

3.73 | 46 ratings

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octopus-4
Special Collaborator
RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team
4 stars I'm surprised to see that I'm the first PA collaborator writing a review of the last studio album of the Hungarian After Crying.

If anybody asks you what you mean for "Symphonic Prog", I think this band can be used as example. This album is not an exception: 4 suites (West, North, East and South), with lyrics in Hungarian with an alternance of orchestral and rock moments in the best tradition of the genre.

"Creatura" is an Italian word already present in the late Latin and means "Being" or of course "Creature". Unfortunately I don't understand Hungarian and I haven't found a translaton of he lyrics so even though I'm sure that it's based on a concept, I can't tell what it's about.

"West" has a symphonic intro, followed by a rock part with some passages reminding of King Crimson. The third part of this mini-suite is interesting. It features a narrator, bass, drums and mainly a background trumpet.

"North" is made of nine movements. It starts as all the four suites with a symphonic "Preludio" which is the reprise of the same intro of "West". It's followed by a jazz trumpet which reminds to the atmospheres of Blade Runner: dark and rainy, suddenly replaced by a piano minuet. After the piano it's hard rock with a strong Crimsonian flavor and an excellent guitar solo. The following movement is a song entitled "The Illusionist" with a French Chansonnier flavor. It's followed by a dark song made of keyboard and bass pitched vocals which makes me think to Rick Wright's Broken China. The strings quartet which follows is quite a natural follow-up. Everytime this band goes into classical music the result is excellent. The piano based instrumental which follows is another great piece. Then it comes the hypnotic "title track". Choir and percussive sounds for a very dark and grotesque song.

It's time for the third Prelude which starts "East" which is the shortest of the 4 suites. The first movement after the prelude is a dreamy peaceful instrumental. The transitions are less sudden than on the previous two suites. The passage between the peaceful mood to this dark section is smooth. For a while, it has reminded me to Marillion's "Passing Strangers". It's incredible how starting from the violin we can fall into a drum solo leading to a keyborad solo and then to one of the darkest and very Crimsonian moments of the whole album. Darkness enhanced by the following movement which has English lyrics. A dark rock song started by tape sounds typical of house music. Dark ambient now. A narrator speaks over a keyboard layer. Again Blade Runner comes to mind (the atmosphere). The question repeated by the speaker means "Are You Still Alive?". A wonderful minute and half of classical inspired music closes this third suite.

The prelude is 8 seconds shorter this time. The fourth suite, "South" has an electronic start which grows into a very good song, in Hungarian this time. A melodic song. Totally progressive followed by an uptime orchestral movement in Emerson Lake and Palmer style (the kind of orchestral things typical of Works vol. 1) with a lot of jazz inside. Effectively Gershwin and Copland come to my mind. One of the best things of the album. There's room for bass in the movement which follows. A rhythmic bass is the layer on which this instrumental developes on. Another moment of darkness reminding to Fripp & co. The closer is a choir accompanied by drums only. Excellent also this.

The only reason why I don't rate this album as a masterpiece is the fact that the various movements are too disconnected. Some transitions don't work very well and this sometimes breaks the listening pleasure. However each single track or movement taken alone is excellent. For fans of King Crimson, Emerson Lake and Palmer and the dark side of Symphonic prog in general.

octopus-4 | 4/5 |

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