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POSTHUMOUS SILENCE

Sylvan

Neo-Prog


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erik neuteboom
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars I didn't know this band though this new CD is their fifth, "shame on me"! So unfortunately I cannot compare Posthumous Silence to the previous releases by Sylvan.

Well, after a first listening session I was impressed. Sylvan manages to create a rather own sound, scouting the borders between progressive pop and neo- progressive rock. The vocals by Marco Gluhmann are a good point in Sylvian their music, his voice has a wide range and lots of emotion. At some moments a bit theatrical but this doesn't disturb me at all. The new album contains fifteen compositions, the running time is at about 70 minutes. The atmosphere in the songs is very varied: between dreamy and bombastic with sensational synthesizer runs, expressive vocals and fiery electric guitar in In Chains, a wonderful 'on-cloud-number-nine' guitar solo in Pane Of Truth, a great build-up from acoustic piano to a bombastic finale with sensitive electric guitar and lush keyboards in The Colors Changed, many shifting moods with sparkling piano and a spectacular build-up synthesizer solo in Questions, an ominous climate with agressive vocals and heavy guitar riffs in The Last Embrace and a splendid, very compelling atmosphere with howling electric guitar runs in the captivating titletrack.

I AM SURE THIS ALBUM WILL PLEASE MANY NEO-PROGHEADS!

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Send comments to erik neuteboom (BETA) | Report this review (#75334)
Posted Tuesday, April 18, 2006 | Review Permalink
evenless
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars I must say I was looking forward to Sylvan's new album after the somewhat disappointing "X-rayed" I was hoping they could repeat some of the greatness of "Artificial Paradise". Especially when I read on their website that "Posthumous Silence" was going to be their first concept album in the same style as Marillion's "Brave" and IQ's "Subterranean"! (Two of my favourite neo-prog-rock albums of the last twenty years).

So I decided to pre-order "Posthumous Silence" immediately from the "Sylvan shop" and without any regrets. This album needs some time to settle in, but after spinning it minimum ten times in my CD-player I think I'm ready to post my review on this album. Let me take you through this album track by track:

1. Eternity Ends

Theatrical opening of just over two minutes really makes you wonder on which journey the music is going to take you.

2. Bequest of Tears

Piece I of the concept album starts here. Beautiful opening by soft piano and soft voice of Marco Glühmann. The end of this song really builds up to the beginning of the next track: In Chains.

3. In Chains

In Chains starts by heavy guitar riffs and Marco's vocals coming up to speed and volume. Quite heavy chorus with a lot of emotion in his voice followed by a bridge leading in to the next chorus. After the second chorus there's a small guitar solo that remembers me a little of the middle section of Porcupine Tree's "Arriving somewhere but not here". The middle section of this track is somewhat softer: softer vocals and dreamy keyboards followed by a wonderful guitar-solo. At the end of the track Marco seems to be rapping rather than singing followed again by the heavy guitar riffs. This track is just over 8 minutes long.

4. Bitter Symphony

This is where piece II of the concept album starts. Melancholic intro with soft vocals of Marco leading into the next track "Pane of truth".

5. Pane of Truth

Somewhat softer track on this album with beautiful piano, great vocals and TV or radio broadcast on the background from time to time. Soft middle section followed by a warm guitar solo at five and a half minutes. Theatrical and bombastic ending. All together a wonderful song.

6. No Earthly Reason

Part III of the concept kicks off again started by soft piano and soft vocals. Again this song builds up to the next track.

7. Forgotten Virtue

Starting with similar guitar riffs as in "In Chains". I'm afraid the chorus is not to every ones taste. The singing seems more like shouting and seems a bit "over the top". The more peaceful and melancholic middle section saves this song, but certainly not my favourite album track.

8. The Colours Changed

Soft piano intro with again the soft vocals of Marco. Great melancholic chorus! This is the Sylvan that reminds me of "Artificial Paradise"! Definitely a strong piece of music!

9. A Sad Sympathy

Part IV of the concept album. Again nothing more (or less) than a theatrical prelude of the following track.

10. Questions

This track and the following track really combine well. "Questions" is already good, but "Answer to Life" is even better! Great melancholic chorus once again sung very beautifully and from around four minutes there's a wonderful instrumental part that keeps haunting you. This is why people like me enjoy Sylvan so much!

11. Answer to Life

I would almost say: "don't start by listening to this track, because you'll be spoiled and won't like the other tracks anymore" ;-) Soft instrumental intro followed by "crying" guitar. Nice bridge by vocals leading into great chorus with a very strong melody that will haunt you for days. This track has it all! WOW! Definitely 5 stars for this track!

12. Message from the past

Final part (Part V) of Posthumous Silence. With a track time of exactly three minutes and containing vocals as well this track is a bit more than just a prelude. This is a nice and soft track all by itself but overflowing in the following track again.

13. The Last Embrace

A bit of Marco's "rapping and shouting" is returning in this track. The lyrics say "shout it out" and that is literally what Marco's doing! Okay, it's shouting, but with a lot of temper and emotion in his voice, so actually not bad at all, even though it won't be everybody's taste.

14. A Kind of Eden

After the shouting on "The Last Embrace" you will have some time to lay back and relax again. Somewhat softer track, pretty nice, but definitely not the masterpiece of this album. Because that would probably be "Answer to Life" or:

15. Posthumous Silence

It's not a coincidence that this is the title track of the album and that Sylvan decided to put a "teaser" on their website containing a partition of this track! This preview on the album made me decide to order it immediately. This track, once again, has it all! Great dreamy instrumental parts and great vocals and the best guitar solo that's on this album! The chorus part "Lost and forgotten." will be haunting you for days.

Too bad when just over seventy minutes of listening and enjoying this album are over. But fortunately there's a "repeat button" on most CD / DVD players ;-)

My personal rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars. Excellent addition to any prog music collection

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Send comments to evenless (BETA) | Report this review (#75566)
Posted Thursday, April 20, 2006 | Review Permalink
4 stars I with impatience waited for an output of this album. I admit, that after an output of an album " Artificial paradise " I was in delight. Shaking in the beauty, strong and powerful - all is far not positive qualities, that I can name. After an output of a following album of group - X-Rayed, I have been a little bit disappointed. The album is good, but not how previous. And here a long-awaited novelty - Posthumous Silence. What it is possible to tell? That the album has gone right - unequivocally. How much it is good - it is very good! Whether it is possible to compare it with Artificial Paradise? I Think is not present. Artificial Paradise - one of the best neo-prog albums of decade. Work of 2006 - simply very good album. Not a masterpiece, but sound and equal product. Firm four stars. Undoubtedly in a collection of each fan of progressive fate.

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Send comments to Serb (BETA) | Report this review (#76804)
Posted Monday, May 01, 2006 | Review Permalink
4 stars This is another master piece in progland. Just close your eyes and let it take you away en a PINK FLOYD disch style. If they told you it was a RPWL clone you wouldn´t be surpriced. The music will take you away in manny beat changes. The voice is recognizeable and that´s what I like. One way to listen to this album is to put on a headset and it will take you away. I won´t go as far as to give it 5 stars, there must be a drive to improve, but 4 stars well deserved.

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Send comments to Hét LICHAAM (BETA) | Report this review (#77807)
Posted Thursday, May 11, 2006 | Review Permalink
Menswear
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Next generation band.

The future progressive music could tend to go on mixing Metal, Math Rock and Electro. Bands like Sigur Ros, Mogwai, Riverside, Mars Volta, System of a Down and OSI have great futures in front of them. Kidz are getting more and more open minded, wanting more diversity on each record and creating a need for new blood and fresh ideas...So maybe less space for the traditionnal rock band? Perhpas.

But not with bands like Sylvan, Germany's best kept secret of the last 5 years. Sylvan is proudly making music that won't revolutionnate anything, but the torch has been past to younger bands like them with heart and soul, like the old times. Sylvan is by no means a 'retro band', making music to only give hommage to their favorite band. Néo- Progressive is saturated with clones and wannabes, oh lord get me out of here. Now the genre is falling into pieces, but bands are still providing crates of Marillion cloning! Get the picture?

Fresh blood with cojones, you get Sylvan. They're not choir boys, without being metal , but it's getting closer and closer and...Their sound is fresh and modern. A bit of mainstream attitude mixed with classic rock and metal at the same time. Think Our Lady Peace, Three Days Grace and Tori Amos. Curious blend, but mean attack! They applied themselves on Posthumous Silence, and it shows from A-Z. It's not a double album, but there's so much to get into, it sure feels like one! The plot is also very heavy: dealing with subjects like suicide and deep remorses is touchy, and could easily fall into cheesy, marshmallow material. Oof, we're clear on here, but this is a very emotionnal record, kinda like Brave (Marillion), but NOT sounding like it; Sylvan sound great, modern, young, and Gluhmann is my choice of best voice of 2006.

This album is making a big ruckuss in Europe, but not in North America. Understandable, it just came out, but people seem to get berserk over this one across the Atlantic. Great, looks like someone got what they are, finally! Who knew that the runner-up for best 2006 album was this early in the year? Woo-hoo.

Promsing symphonic bands doing it right: Wobbler, Paatos, The Tangent, Magic Pie and now add Sylvan please.

Remember that name, Sylvan. You will hear it often.

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Send comments to Menswear (BETA) | Report this review (#80890)
Posted Saturday, June 10, 2006 | Review Permalink
Fishy
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars I found myself pretty surprised by this record. This band is filed under the neo-prog flag but in fact, the music on "Posthumous silence" is a lot more original and diverse. There's definitely some neo prog ingredients but there's a noticeable Floyd influence as well and some tracks like "In Chains" and "Answer to life" come close to vintage prog metal. But there's more. There's an atmospheric sound spread all over the record. This is simply awesome to hear !

This is clearly a concept album where all tracks form a unit. If you listen to PS, you should listen from start to finish to understand the album's concept. This task is not hard to accomplish because the music is so compelling, I can't manage to reach the 'power off' button. If this was released in the vinyl era, it would have been a double album but now there's 70 minutes of wonderful music on one cd. So we don't have any filler, every track has a right to be there. Therefore it's hard to mention some highlights or flaws. Sylvan keep the level of composition high, constantly.

Like on many conceptual releases, emotion is the keyword. The feelings of despair and suicide don't get too much grip on the listener thanks to the modern sound and fresh production. The album is a succession of calm, intimate and violent bombastic moments.

Musically, there's an awful lot of keyboards which provides a great diversity of sounds. On the background melodies, one can recognise the hypnotic keys which also can also be found on the latest albums of Anathema. Some of the tracks have orchestral arrangements which include some violin parts that suits the sound of the album well. The vocals are also awesome and it's unbelievable to hear what the singer is capable of ; one moments he sounds like Midge Ure while later on he sounds like a typical metal vocalist. Only on a couple of the calmer moments his vocals fail to impress.

Most of all the inspired melodies make this album special. Moreover the different tracks are balanced compositions which flow into each other very smooth. You actually have to take a look on the cd player to notice when one track is finished and a new one just begun.

Conclusion : This has to be one of the best prog releases of 2006 ; recommended !

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Send comments to Fishy (BETA) | Report this review (#89659)
Posted Thursday, September 14, 2006 | Review Permalink
Windhawk
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Posthumous Silence has been included in quite a few lists of best releases in 2006.

And with a reason.

Although the music do resemble Marillion in places, most of all Sylvan sound like themselves for 95% of the time.

Lush keyboards filling up the soundscape and enhancing moods, the melancholic and somewhat sad soaring voice of Marco Glühmann, the metal guitars utilized as musical backdrops to create sinister atmospheres where needed, the piano and the fuzz-less guitar carrying the melodies in most of the songs.

And the songs. 15 is listed, but really there's just one or two tracks - depending how you view it - where individual parts have been given a song name. And all of the parts are good as well.

Strong melodies, good drive, strong moods and emotions throughout.

Some will probably feel that all the catchy chorus parts aren't true to the idea of progressive music; but if you can stand the idea of having chorus parts you can hum along to there's a good chance that you'll judge this release the same way as I do: As a masterpiece.

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Send comments to Windhawk (BETA) | Report this review (#110612)
Posted Saturday, February 03, 2007 | Review Permalink
Melomaniac
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars 'Posthumous Silence' is my first encounter with Sylvan, and based on that, I have a hard time understanding the 'neo-prog' etiquette attached to them (don't get me wrong though, I enjoy quite a few neo-prog acts), but I have to listen to their other recordings to find out if this label is justified. That being said, on to the album :

'Posthumous Silence' is a concept album relating the story of a father going through the pages of his daughter's diary after her suicide. A very touchy and emotional subject, and, you might think, leaves place for overly emotional (read laughable and pathetic) music. Not !!! From one song to the other, we are taken from the pages of the daughter's diary, filled with despair, anger, rage, to the feelings of the father (mostly sorrow and regret), and it all makes for destabilizing mood shifts very well portrayed in the music, lyrics and vocals. That's for the concept, and it works brilliantly.

On the musical side, many mixed influences can be heard on this album (Porcupine Tree, Pink Floyd, Pain of Salvation, Anathema, Spock's Beard), adding up to create a sound that Sylvan can truly call their own. Marco Glühmann (lead vocals) is a revelation and a surprise for me, a vocalist one could put in the same category as Daniel Gildenlow and Mike Patton for his versatility, feel and capabilities. He also reminds a bit of Anathema's Vincent Cavanagh at times. The rest of the band is a joy to listen to : great bass lines, tight and creative drumming (though not too complex, but efficient), great guitars (amazing leads) and keys also (breathtaking piano). Dialogs are inserted throughout the album, and due to the nature of the concept, they can be a bit disturbing at times, but it only makes for a more gripping listen.

Hats off to Sylvan for this amazing album that could have easily been cheesy and pompous, but instead turns out to be, in my opinion, one of the best albums from 2006. Without a doubt in my mind this album gets the five star rating from me. If you don't know the band, GET THIS !!! You are in for a surprise.

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Send comments to Melomaniac (BETA) | Report this review (#111026)
Posted Thursday, February 08, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars I'm currently listening to this album so it seems like a good time for a quick review...

Though I've visited the Sylvan pages here before, it was thanks to listening to the tracks on their MySpace page that I decided to give this album a spin. The MySpace tracks impressed my very much and I wondered if this album would live up to their promise. I'm pleased to say that it does.

It is an album laden with atmosphere and emotion, not to mention great musicianship and lyrics. I don't think that the neo-progressive label sits very well with the album though. It has too much breadth and depth to be so pigeon-holed. There are elements of metal, prog-metal, nu-metal, electronica, good use of samples, and spoken lyrics making this much more of a crossover album. It reminds me of Pink Floyd because of the band's use of melody mixed with background samples but with a much harder edge. The underlying concept is also reminiscent of the Floyd approach.

I won't analyse each track as too many of them are so very, very good. So, with an album like this in their canon, I see big things ahead for Sylvan. They'll certainly be making a few more royalties when I purchase more of their albums. I recommend that you do the same and at least check out this release, I don't think you'll be disappointed.

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Send comments to scarista (BETA) | Report this review (#114507)
Posted Thursday, March 08, 2007 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars So far, Sylvan could hardly please my ears during their fourth albums preceding this one.

This one is a concept album. The explanation of this "concept" being outlined as follows on Sylvan's official web-site : "It tells the story of a father, who discovers for the first time the life of his lost daughter through her dairy. He gets to know the chains and fears, her search and the consequences of her actions. Those who let theirselves drag deep into the story, will realise, that the life of the daughter is strongly correlated with our own fate and that the responsability of the father is perhaps ours as well".

As far as I am concerned, this is a bit short to call this a concept. And to elaborate seventy minutes of music around this might lead us to some disenchantment. Let's check about the musical content.

After a dull introduction (one would have expected something imposing) "Bequest Of Tears" is a great and very quiet song. Very spacey and Floyding. It is not really thier style, but I have to say that when they produce songs like this, I find it rather interesting.

This joy will be short, since we are back into the heavy sounds so typical for Sylvan". "In Chains" holds more heavy-metal features than prog ones. I have mentioned several times that I really appreciate the vocals for Marco, but when playing these type of songs, his subtle and pleasant work is turned into almost growling tones which are not my cup of tea. Fortunately, this long song will also feature a good and true prog passage. Very nice guitar break (but I have already stressed this positive charateristic about the band). But the heavy metal style is back for the last third of this long song.

As in any concept album, we'll have some transitional tracks. Actually, there are five of these on this work. The first one being "Bequest", the second is "Bitter Symphony" which is again a very peaceful (but short) moment.

It flows nicely into the longer piece from "Posthumous Silence" : "Pane Of Truth" which is an excellent track. Starting very slowly and displaying a very pleasant melody. It will be more tortured for a while (two minutes) but it will be followed by a gentle and light instrumental section (really great). As far as I'm concerned, it might well be one of the best Sylvan song (of not the best one). A jewel, sincerely. We can feel all the passion of Marco again in his vocal parts. I would have hoped a bombastic finale, but not this time even if the orchestration tends to provide it. A great track.

The third song conveying the concept is "No Eartly Reason". Again very pleasant and aerial. Keyboards reminds me a bit the intro of "Tubular Bells" and adds a nice scary mood to this work.

We are back again in the heavy metal genre witht he boring and tasteless "Forgotten Virtue". I wonder how a band can switch from great to poor with such an easiness...

"The Colors Changed" is a good number again : almost symphonic at times. What a contrast with "Forgotten". It is very welcome of course. This average track will be brought to another level thanks to a fabulous and Floydian guitar break. Actually, I can compare this characteristic with Mostly Autum's album "Inspired By The Lord Of the Ring". There as well, several average songs were saved by a fantastic guitar break fully inspired by David (Gilmour). Thanks again, man (Davis, I mean).

"A Sad Sympathy" is the forth interlude. Again spacey but not on par with the other ones. Just an intro for "Questions". A melodic song only preturbated by some girls shouts (maybe the daughter mentioned in the explanation of the concept). It is another good moment of this album. I wouldn't be as positive for the next one : "Answer to Life". Flat and boring.

The last inter-connection song (or main theme) is another very quiet moment. As the fourth one, it is a bit sub-par with the first three ones. The last numbers of this album are rather useless. "The Last Embrace" is another dull heavy-metal song while "A Kind Of Eden" is a mellowish and monotonous ballad like Marillion (post-Fish of course) could have released. Soulless and uniform.

The title and closing number is saved by (guess what?), yes another vibrant guitar solo combined with a very romantic vocal part from Marco. One of the very best moment of this album (but it last for about 2'30").

IMHHO (in my humble and honest opinion) this might well be the best Sylvan album so far. At least it is the one I prefer. It could have been better if only several songs had been cut of. There is no need to release a seventy minutes album if only forty are good ones. I don't beleive we would have lost of the "concept".

PS : Sylvan annouces on their web-site that of September 1st, they will perform the whole of this album during an "elaborate stage show" (their words). It will take place in Hamburg, Germany.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#122868)
Posted Sunday, May 20, 2007 | Review Permalink
5 stars A friend of mine introduced me to this group, she gave me the cd Posthumous Silence. I never heard of the group Sylvan before, but she said I would like it, so I listened to it and immediatly fell in love with the album, one of the best albums of 2006 Highlights on the album are imo: Pane Of Truth, A Kind Of Eden, Posthumous Silence, Answer To Life, The Colors Changed and In Chains. So if you see this album give it a try cause it's a real masterpiece

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Send comments to Winand007 (BETA) | Report this review (#131041)
Posted Wednesday, August 01, 2007 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars This is SYLVAN's first concept album and it's about a man who gets to know his daughter through reading her diary. The problem is his daughter is gone, she has commited suicide. Obviously this is an emotional record lyrically as well as musically. Actually I have always found SYLVAN's music emotional mainly because of Marco's amazing vocals, but also because of the soaring guitar and powerful melodies.

"Eternity End" is a short 2 minute intro track. It opens with synths, the sounds of birds singing and a choir before we hear an explosion (she died). Sampled words and a choir end it. "Bequest Of Tears" features fragile vocals and piano. Cello comes in and the sound of a submarine (symbolic of being drowned in tears). The following melody re-creates the absolute pain he is feeling. "In Chains" is heavy with riffs and great vocals, especially during the chorus. We get a mellower passage with keys 4 minutes in followed by a nice long soaring guitar melody. The heaviness comes back. "Bitter Symphony" has a nice little guitar line with almost mono-toned vocals. "Pane Of Truth" is a great sounding song with cello and some beautiful guitar 5 1/2 minutes in. It gets emotional after 7 minutes, then cello and piano follow. "No Earthly Reason" is intense with piano and vocals. "Forgotten Virtue" is a heavy tune. Vocals build to a dramatic and theatrical climax three different times.

"The Colors Changed" is a beautiful song with gentle vocals, piano and cello. The song gets emotional before 2 minutes when the vocals and sound grow louder. The guitar is heavenly 5 1/2 minutes in. "A Sad Symphony" is ok, while "Questions" is much better. The vocals are fantastic and the tone of the guitar is perfect 5 minutes in. We get some riffs as the guitar solos over top. The vocals are the highlight on "Answer To Life". "Message From The Past" has cello, piano and melancholic vocals. "The Last Embrace" is bombastic with screaming vocals. I like it. "A Kind Of Eden" opens with water flowing and birds singing as gentle piano and vocals come in. The sound does get louder. "Posthumous Silence" has gentle vocals, piano, strings and soaring guitar 2 minutes in. The last words in the song and album say "We failed to notice, to show her we tried.To keep her from falling, to save this sole child..."

This record and their previous two releases are all so well done. It would be hard for me to say which is the better of the three. They are all excellent. Most would choose this one and I can appreciate why. I can only suggest you get all three, I don't think you will be disappointed.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#134132)
Posted Wednesday, August 22, 2007 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is to me one of the best - if not THE best - releases of 2006. With Posthumous Silence they evolve their sound to a more modern prog style than the previous releases and the battered Neo-prog tag that's been attached to those is now gone and buried. This is a classy release with great melodies and heartbreaking lyrics. A concept album with a serious plot.

Highlights: The Colors Changed, Questions, Answer To Life, A Kind Of Eden, Posthumous Silence.

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Send comments to JockeH (BETA) | Report this review (#151804)
Posted Tuesday, November 20, 2007 | Review Permalink
progrules
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Just a minute ago I gave my review on X-rayed, the predecessor of this album. I said there that I had read very positive reviews about Sylvan and not just on progarchives. The album that people were so thrilled about was this one: Posthumous Silence. And I can say, it's understandable at least partly.

The understandable part is that this is much better than the predecessor, the one I wasn't really enthusiastic about. Why it's better ? I feel that the melodic aspect is a lot better than was the case with X-rayed or the next (Presets). There are some very nice guitarsolos on this album, mainly in the last two tracks. Another thing is that this almost "breathes" the masterpiecestatus. I myself hardly know what that really is, but with some albums you get the feeling it's really special. A good example I already did the review of was The Visitor by Arena to me. But that absolutely was a true masterpiece, with this album it's just a hint of it.

So not quite a masterpiece to me, but this is very good. I think it deserves 4 stars.

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Send comments to progrules (BETA) | Report this review (#153102)
Posted Thursday, November 29, 2007 | Review Permalink
5 stars Hearing track Forgotten Virtue while I write this and expecting to go for The Colors Changed and a lot more I can only give this five solid stars. The music is imaginative, very emotional, flows nicely from a tune to another and from a feeling of despair to hope. The story or the words are not that original but the way they work with the very purposeful music and the orchestration is very well balanced. The musical ideas have roots somewhere familiar but all that is visible sounds original. Not knowing what Sylvan has done before or after this I could imagine this would be hard to overcome. For them or anyone else really. Enjoyable in first class.

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Send comments to JJ (BETA) | Report this review (#182047)
Posted Monday, September 08, 2008 | Review Permalink
5 stars Sylvan - Posthumous Silence

Wow! All I can say is wow!

Many prog boards and fans have lauded this album. I was very nervous about buying it after reading the subject matter.

I bought IQs Subterranea years ago and I still cannot listen to that album in it's entirety. I can only take it in bits and pieces. It affects my mood that much.

So, I thought that the same thing would happen here.

Boy was I wrong.

So many wonderful piano melodies, especially Pane of Truth, The Colors Changed, The Last Embrace, A Kind of Eden, Questions, and the title song. Fantastic use of the choir and what almost sounds like an orchestra!

The music is incredibly good!

Do yourself a favor and give it a try. I am now looking into listening to their back catalog!

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Send comments to Foxtrottresspass (BETA) | Report this review (#184915)
Posted Monday, October 06, 2008 | Review Permalink
5 stars Well, actually I am not a huge neoprog fan for a number of reasons; one of it is a lack of creative stuff. This in particular concerns 60 min + albums which often contain rather boring material, including unmotivated guitar and keyboard solos, meaningless repetitions, etc. So you can't take it as a whole, but just as a collection of separate tracks; some are good, the other are not. But this 70 min concept album is a rare and pleasant exception. I'd say more: these guys are truly bombastic! They grip you with the very first chords and release with the very last. A real passion play: emotional vocal, colorful and powerful guitar and keyboard work, interesting rhythm texture. I was really affected listening to this album, some times it reminded me in spirits ROBERT WHYATT's Rock Bottom. It definitely hits The Neoprog Top 10 together with MARILLION's Script and Childhood, PENDRAGON's Masquerade and ARENA's Visitor. Good luck guys!

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Send comments to groon (BETA) | Report this review (#187139)
Posted Monday, October 27, 2008 | Review Permalink
4 stars A new experience for me.

This band has been recommended to me by my friends in the scene. I now understand why.

The first thing that entered my mind when listening to this album was RADIOHEAD. The vocals is pretty similar to Thom Yorke........ but a lot better. The music is pretty mellow and driven by the vocals, keys and guitars. This is not complex and technical music. It is my understanding this is a concept about a man discovering his daughter's world through her diaries. If this is true, I can understand why the music is so mellow. The music fits the lyrics. Besides of being mellow, this is the typical neo-prog with some elements of progressive metal. I find some similarities with RADIOHEAD and I cannot get them out of my head.

The quality is very high throughout with no outstanding songs. I regard this as one piece of music throughout. It is as one symphony I am enjoying this album. I probably should listen more to this album and buy the live album before I pass any judgement on SYLVAN. It is obvious I should give this band more attention.

A good addition to any prog rock collection.

4 stars.

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Send comments to toroddfuglesteg (BETA) | Report this review (#189415)
Posted Saturday, November 15, 2008 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is to me,one of the most beautiful albums I´ve ever heard,for me it´s a masterpiece,it doesn´t bring nothing new to the genre,but it is so well executed,amazing vocals that truly delivers very powerful emotions and all the instruments are in the right places to produce amazing melodies,this is a conceptual album and to me it doesn´t make sense to review song by song,this is an album that has to be heard from start to finish without skipping any song,all of them are so well connected, the final moments of this album are truly epic,the only note i could give is 5.

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Send comments to Grijo (BETA) | Report this review (#235789)
Posted Sunday, August 30, 2009 | Review Permalink
Tarcisio Moura
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars The first Sylvan CD I ever heard was X rated, and even though I can´t say it is bad, it did not move enough to make me write a review aobut it. I don´t waste time writing about something I don´t like. So It took me a long period to finally hear their next, Posthmous Silence. I really don´t know why they labeled it as neo prog: it´s closer to modern prog in the vein of Radiohead with some metal tendencies here and there. Neo prog to me is a less pompous symphonic rock with the guitar more proeminent than the keyboards. There is nothing like that here. But there is little doubt that this CD is far better than X Rated.

First of all there are some great melodies and the song structures are very good. This is a concept album, over 70 minutes long and it´s quite successful. What´s really annoying are those grunge vocals. Not that Marco Glühmann is not good. In fact, he has a terrific voice and on the ´clean´ parts (melodic) he does a great job, but when he starts moaning and grunting the words I barely can stand it. Which is a shame since the instrumental part is very well done, with a good flow, alternating heavy moments with other of pure beauty and delicacy. The guitar lines and keyboards textures are just marvelous: very subtle, sophisticated and very well done. If you can go past the ´dirty´ vocal parts, chances are you´ll love this album. The production is top notch.

To me, fortunatly the good moments are the majority. I can hear this album with much pleasure efven if it does have the issues I mentioned before. As a whole, it´s a great record. It´s just a matter of taste that i can´t give it four or maybe even 5 stars instead of three. 3,5 stars would be more fitting. The music is excellent.

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Send comments to Tarcisio Moura (BETA) | Report this review (#285499)
Posted Monday, June 07, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars SYLVAN's Posthumous Silence has garnered a lot of praise from some very worthy reviewers--and rightfully so. The album is a masterful, insightful, emotional, empathic and introspective theatric/musical rendering of the toll that the psychological pressures of modern human society can exert on its individuals. But, a prog masterpiece? I don't think so. Musically, there is little very new, complicated, or "progressive;" Theatrically and emotionally it is devastatingly powerful--especially the second half. Then there is the question of category: neo, metal, heavy, or even prog (i.e. is it really more straight rock, e.g. like TRIUMPH, RAINBOW or JOURNEY? ) As a vehicle for an amazing story, and as a vehicle for showdcasing the extraordinary voice talents of Marco Glühmann, Sylvan have succeeded extraordinarily well. As a showcase for anything new: not really. Highligths for me include: the gorgeous "Pane of Truth" (8/10, a little too long), the psychologically powerful and disturbing "Forgotten Virtue (7/10), the beautiful and more progressive "The Colours Changed" (7/10), the song that really sucks you into the disturbing world of mental illness, "Questions" (7/10), the classic rock anthem with a social-political message "Answer to Life" (7/10), the theatric highpoint of the album "The Last Embrace" (9/10 Wow!), and the final two songs which drive the two-sided message home, "A Kind of Eden" (7/10) and "Posthumous Silence" (9/10 Wow! And, Whew! I'm worn out! Aren't you?).

An excellent addition to any music lover's collection--yes, even a prog lover's music collection. Four stars.

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Send comments to BrufordFreak (BETA) | Report this review (#287993)
Posted Wednesday, June 23, 2010 | Review Permalink
5 stars It's not like me to mark on my "to do" list, to trip on over to this site and review a release. I mean, I will do it when I'm here looking for new releases and all - but I am here to add my 2 cents concerning Posthumous Silence. I have owned this CD for a couple of years now and listen to it with some frequency. This is a WONDERFUL piece of music. The more I hear it, the more I am drawn into the story, which is one of those rare characteristics of a great progressive work.

It took awhile for me to grow into Posthumous Silence, even though I enjoyed it at my first listen. But like all good musical art, it became more impressive over time. I own several Sylvan releases, but this one tops the list for me. Its symphonic base is excellently written, the lyrics are descriptive and compelling and the musical delivery is spot on. If you enjoy the telling of the story accompanied by excellent compositional delivery, then I strongly recommend you add Posthumous Silence to your musical library!

It isn't some rockin' headbanger progressive craziness or anything fun like that ... so if that is your cup of tea, perhaps you should turn away. But if you are looking for more than that, this is a story in music that should awaken your spirit.

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Send comments to HotToad5 (BETA) | Report this review (#304883)
Posted Saturday, October 16, 2010 | Review Permalink
lazland
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars A stunning, and staggering, piece of modern neo progressive rock, this album from German band Sylvan deals with the almost impossibly sad subject of a review by a father of his dead daughter's diary - she killed herself.

Throughout, much in the way that Marillion's Brave did, the narrative is relentless and tells a huge story, but in a sensitive and understanding manner.

The vocals by Marco Gluhmann are exceptional throughout, and his bandmates create a wonderful musical pastiche which, to these ears, is extremely original, thus probably placing it more in the symphonic rather than neo category.

There are some very heavy phases, but, in the main, the album is filled with huge melodies.

This is the first album I have brought from this band, and it was on the strength of the PA charts. I have since brought Force of Gravity, and will definitely be completing my collection.

This album fully deserves the full five stars. I regard it as being essential in terms of a wonderful modern band pointing the way forward for the future of the genre. Taking their influences from, but certainly not copying, the classic bands, and wrapping it all in an album which can be listened to by a whole new generation perhaps sympathetic with the extremely sad story told.

Very highly recommended to all reading this review.

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Send comments to lazland (BETA) | Report this review (#305968)
Posted Thursday, October 21, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars 7/10

Neo-prog, hard rock and lots of melancholy. Sylvian gives us a beautiful, but inconsistent album neo-prog rock, titled Posthumous Silence.

And this is an album quite different from other sub-genre of so much criticism. The sound of this German band is very emotional, melodic, heavy and a bit sad. There are similarities with those "clones" of Genesis (which saturate and damage the neo-prog), even though at times I get the feeling that I've heard that passage somewhere ... just do not know where (Marillion Hoghart era, could it be?).

As a whole, the album is not perfect. There are some forgettable moments and weak, but this is offset by a handful of strong songs that represent the various facets of the album. Some of them are In Chains, Pane of Truth, Forgotten Virtue, Questions and Answers to Life. However it is best left for last: the title track (which I heard here on the site and made me awaken curiosity for this album) is one of only 5 minutes epic that sums up all the features of the album at the same time that the ends with praise. Great song!

4 stars for Posthumous Silence. Probably one of the best neo-prog album I've heard.

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Send comments to voliveira (BETA) | Report this review (#524791)
Posted Friday, September 16, 2011 | Review Permalink
Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I noticed this band underwent dramatic change in their music style when they released 'Artificial Paradise' in 2002. It's totally different with their 'Encounters' album (2000) which I like it very much and represents my first introduction to the band. I felt in love with the opening track 'No Way Out' which showcase one of the best neo-prog song with killing riffs and powerful melody.

I consider the concept album 'Posthumous Silence' would satisfy fans of Pink Floyd, Marillion and Radiohead. It opens with a great vibe in a moody and atmospheric 'Eternity Ends' (2:54) which reminds me to the opening of Pink Floyd's 'Pulse' through 'Shine on You Crazy Diamond'. But instead of using bluesy guitar, this song uses atmospheric female choirs. It's really great and it sets the overall tone of the concert. The piano intro of 'Bequest of Tears' (3:05) and vocal work of Marco Gl'hmann reminds me to the opening concert of Peter Gabriel with his 'Here Comes The Flood' using his piano. It's a great opening, really! The basslines remarks the entrance of 'In Chains' (8:55) where the music flows in upbeat mode with nice and soft guitar riffs. This is an excellent track! The album represents great flow of music with excellent combination of keyboard and guitar work accompanying great vocal line. Track like 'Pane of Truth' (9:14) is really worth enjoying especially with its emotive style, great accentuation in vocal and tight basslines. The interlude sections of the music are also excellent. You can enjoy wonderful keyboard and guitar work in 'Questions' (6:58) for example. I find this album is enjoyable from start to finish until closing track 'Posthumous Silence' (5:38).

Overall, it's an excellent addition to any prog music collection with 4.5 stars rating. Keep on proggin' ...!!!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

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Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#602807)
Posted Tuesday, January 03, 2012 | Review Permalink
Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Sylvan's Posthumous Silence is a neo-prog concept album showing more influence from Pink Floyd and Pallas (to my ears, at least) than the usual suspects of Genesis and Marillion. It's an interesting enough effort, though to be honest I don't quite understand the near-universal praise it gets. It's a fairly slow and stodgy piece altogether, and I really don't think the ideas presented justify the 70 minute plus running time. Apparently, this was recorded simultaneously with Presets, which showcased the more accessible end of Sylvan's style; I can't help but wonder whether they'd have produced a superior work if they'd made a shorter album consisting of the best musical ideas from both.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#702236)
Posted Sunday, April 01, 2012 | Review Permalink

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