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Spock's Beard - Brief Nocturnes And Dreamless Sleep CD (album) cover


Spock's Beard


Symphonic Prog

4.01 | 683 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
5 stars I purchased this album on the day of it's release, and was so taken by it that I wanted to give it extra time to see if my appreciation faded over time. If anything, after twenty or so listens, I like it even more.

Some years back, after losing their leader and main songwriter, Spocks Beard went through a painful rebirth, crafting two well recorded, but ultimately unmemorable albums before regaining their prog footing and adding a heavier sound in 2006.

Now they have lost Nick D'Virgilio, and havent missed a step. If anything, they have gotten better. Adding touring drummer Jimmy Keegan and singer Ted Leonard, already known for his work with Enchant, the Beard has released an album as good as any from the Morse years (Neal Morse did lend a hand in this, assisting with the writing of two tracks, and playing guitar on one of these).

I like Leonard's vocals much more that D'Virgilio (who has a good singing voice, but sounds too much like an arena rock vocalist for my taste), and even a bit more than Morse. Leonard's voice is similar in tone to Morse, but has more power when it is needed.

The band itself has come up with a blend of Morse's complex style (including those Gentle Giant inspired vocals on Afterthought, an extension of the earlier Thoughts tracks, and often adds a metal edge similar to Dream Theater. Keyboardist Ryo Okumoto and bassist Dave Meros shine on this album like never before. On previous releases, they had their moments, but now they seem to shine on almost every track.

I'm very sorry, NDV, as I admire your talents, but the Beard have really moved up to a new level since you left.

Evolver | 5/5 |


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