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The Windmill - To Be Continued... CD (album) cover

TO BE CONTINUED...

The Windmill

 

Heavy Prog

3.77 | 51 ratings

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tszirmay
Special Collaborator
Crossover Team
4 stars Barely a few minutes into their debut song on their debut album, the Windmill do the unexpected, they kick you in the software section of your body and make sure you cringe in delight!

Talk about a spicy opener, humorously entitled "Cinnamon", elevating both the spice and the original Mission Impossible, Barbara Bain-acted vamp/spy. The sweetness is there at the beginning, almost jazzy and then swiftly turning bold and fiery. The bass guitar is unafraid to introduce itself and the solid drumming falls obediently in line. This is a fast- paced and shuffling instrumental exercise intended to limber up the spirit and showcase the quality of the instrumentalists, make no mistake about these guys' chops, they are quality musicians. The synth outbreak alone is remarkable, hinting at past glories and some devilish guitar phrasings. Tremendous introduction to their craft.

"The Colour of Seasons" states a different mood, a fine cross between Collins-led Genesis and some quasi- Supertramp-ish feel, what with the sax and the heavy drumming. The vocal sections are limpid and pretty accessible, whilst the instrumental playing is just off the charts. Not a song that will hit you ASAP because of the Norse-tinged English singing, which may detract at the outset but fades kind of charmingly away. But the subtleties really bring in the warmth behind the nimble fingers.

"A Day in a Hero's Life" is a bold statement, a rambling theatrical play that struts 21 minutes and such with delicious flair. It's not perhaps perfect but it's thunderously played, by inspired and confident players. The bizarre piccolo synth solo is beyond heavenly and celestial especially when the rest of the band kick in, rather boisterously! Pleasures nodes are floating in nirvana again. It's the style selectivity and the sonic structure that curiously inspire, as they display a lot of spirit in the instrumental parts. Fluid guitar rampantly fluttering into the most absurd voice choir you will ever hear, almost like Norse chanting, with a Canterbury/Gentle Giant twist. Very well pulled off and cleverly done. Morten Clason's sultry sax makes multiple entrances, very Floyd of course because of the languid exhortations into psychedelic glory, what with the raging campfire organ carpeting for the fuzzed-out axe solo. Very intense activity within the various segments of the epic, the piece never seems disjointed. Au contraire, the soloing simply inspires to even tighter playing and carving out seductive new ground, especially when the sax goes for an extended blast. This is ultracool, a word I like to cherish since my 80's fix with Ultravox. Keyboardist Jean Robert Viita does some unforgettable work throughout, as his presence is paramount to their colorful sound.

"The Eagle" is a towering symphonic splurge with an arsenal of colorful keys leading the way, swirling guitars joining the simple melody fray, all quite grandiose and majestic. One has the impression of comfortable surroundings, the mood getting slightly funkier with that sensuous sax spreading some urbane perspiration, the soaring guitars grinding effusively and the elegant piano finishing the deal. Truly salivating stuff, with a little hint of Boston's "More than a Feeling" guitar work.

"Don't Be Afraid" is a another heavy melancholic ballad , done superbly with sprawling sentiments that heighten the edge , a trademark that this band will repeat in the future I hope , as they simply revel in such gigantic melodies. The magical flute is strategically placed for maximum effect, certainly painting a Tull effect, what with profound relationship- based lyrics and an insightful vocal delivery. The booming Led Zep Kashmir-inspired section is stunningly fitting, giving the melodious track some well-deserved oomph, taking this piece into the heavens. The flute takes a lovely solo, the organ roils and the guitars explode. Simply perfect music that talks to me.

"To Be Continued?" is a lovely folky melody, issued from the fine Norse folk tradition, hinting at more music to come ?.I actually enjoy final statements that appear as an intro to the next album, something early Mostly Autumn did rather convincingly, as it creates a sense of perpetual change.

A fine opening page to the Windmill's obvious talent, a band to watch intently as their best is yet to come.

4.5 Future Episodes

tszirmay | 4/5 |

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