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Mostly Autumn - Storms Over Still Water CD (album) cover

STORMS OVER STILL WATER

Mostly Autumn

 

Prog Folk

3.52 | 106 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

alextorres
5 stars Rarely have I been so excited on hearing a CD! It just blew me away! It is brilliant!! The problem is, you see, that when I played this album it was the first time that I had heard Mostly Autumn. To my shame, I did not know of their existence until they were recommended by a friend on a BJH-discussion forum website. In following his recommendation I plumped for "Storms Over Still Water", their latest album, more or less at random. I shall now be collecting the back catalogue as fast as my wallet will allow!

So, from not knowing what to expect, I was transfixed from the opening song and swept along mesmerized until the very last notes had faded. What power! What pace, almost unrelenting! What wonderful music, superbly arranged. And songs with a "conscience" to boot! This is a progressive rock band that rocks! Where is my superlatives dictionary?

I have seen some unflattering reviews comparing Mostly Autumn with Renaissance and Jethro Tull (because they use a flute!). Jethro Tull are a fine band but, to me, Mostly Autumn owe nothing to them. Renaissance are perhaps a closer approximation but Mostly Autumn have taken the "rock" in "progressive rock" much further than Renaissance ever did. I would say that, certainly on "Storms Over Still Water", the music is rock guitar driven, whereas it never was in Renaissance. Mostly Autumn pack far more punch. This is not to say that the keyboards and other instruments are forgotten or underplayed; no, each plays a strong part in fusing together powerful songs.

Unlike many other "prog rock" bands that I've heard, Mostly Autumn often generate real pace and power which they alternate effectively with slower passages to create a range of moods and emotions through the music. A good example is in "The End of the World", an ironic bitter-sweet song which takes you through simple loving, homely scenes whilst chronicling the destruction of the world! This song is followed by "Black Rain", an environmentally conscious song that delivers real pace and power to great effect.

Mellower songs are likewise effective: "Carpe Diem" is a beautiful piece inspired by the tsunami of 2004, evocatively sung and vocalised by Heather Findlay, where a range of instruments provide the background for some superb Bryan Josh lead-guitar phrasing. "Storms Over Still Water", the title track, follows and builds up the tempo from a slow start, Bryan taking over the vocals from Heather for the song's second part before launching into another great guitar solo, then taking us out gently into the closing instrumental number, entitled "Tomorrow", which is full of musical hope and joy. This album is nothing short of phenomenal.

alextorres | 5/5 |

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