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5 stars This was one of the best - and most surprising - discs this reviewer heard last year, without question. Cathedral displays a well-crafted, unique, and original sound that should make every American prog fan want to salute. Young vocalist Ted Thompson's voice and delivery are powerful and passionate, while guitarist Gary Sisto, keysman Todd Braverman, bassist Mike Hounshell, and drummer Mark Copney concoct a potent progressive brew, blending elements of everyone from Marillion to Led Zeppelin to Genesis to Pink Floyd, while sounding like none of them... There in the Shadows contains some of the freshest and most unique prog rock this reviewer has heard... we have this and their first disc Kingdom of Ends to remind us how special they really were.
Report this review (#37047)
Posted Monday, June 20, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars There are similarities to their previous release, Kingdom of Ends, but Cathedral have honed their style into something more original and more varied... Though (guitarist) Sisto's style is strongly reminiscent of [David Gilmour of Pink Floyd], it actually helps him stand out among the many faceless neo-prog guitar players... In all, another solid album from Cathedral, sure to please fans of their first album, as well as attract new fans.
Report this review (#39104)
Posted Sunday, July 10, 2005 | Review Permalink
Prog-Folk Team
2 stars I get several flashes of deja vu as I listen to this effort by Cathedral. Some are flattering references, others less so. In particular the vocalist Ted Thompson reminds me of a cross between 3 Steves: Perry, Winwood, and Hogarth. All three are what I would call average vocalists, not ones who detract terribly but not ones that I would buy an album for. So it remains to the songs of this American band to wow me and make my heart flutter.

"There in the Shadows" gets off to a great start, with two engaging and delightfully contrasting tracks, "Holy War", with its potent melodic lines and thought-provoking lyrics, and the largely acoustic, but not folky, "Junk Drawer". "Renfield" is promising about halfway, with some references to Genesis' "Dancing with the Moonlit Knight", until it becomes a plodding hard rock song. After that the album goes into a steep decline, with a few fairly mundane songs with little appeal. The lengthiest piece, "Existential Crisis', is divided into three parts, the first two of which are highly praiseworthy, with the last dissolving into a boorish headbanging fest.

What started well and distinctively enough ends up as just another neo album with occasional and poorly executed hard rock aspirations. In spite of my having given "There in the Shadows" multiple repeat "spins", you won't find me worshiping at this cathedral.

Report this review (#130870)
Posted Monday, July 30, 2007 | Review Permalink
2 stars No, this is neither the superb symphonic prog rock act from the '70 or the doom metal act from England. This is a now disbanded American band who released two albums in the '90. This is their second and final album. The music is distinct AOR, but with a neo-prog edge.

This album is too American AOR orientated in my view, but it still have some good music. The guitars are good and so are the synths. The sound is typical for the '90s. It is not a must have or something I would pay much money for, but it is a solid and rather bland album. If you like a mix of neo prog like IQ and AOR, this will be a good album for you.

Report this review (#186671)
Posted Wednesday, October 22, 2008 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
3 stars 3.5 stars. I actually like this album a lot. Their sound reminds me somewhat of the style of fellow Americans ENCHANT, I just wished they kept it on the heavier side like they do on the stand out track "Renfield". At 65 minutes they really could have trimmed down a couple of songs and this album would have been even better.

Vocals and guitar stand out early on the opening track "Holy War". It settles 2 1/2 minutes in with reserved vocals and keyboards. Not for long though. I like the guitar solo before 4 minutes and later around 5 1/2 minutes. "Junk Drawer" is mostly acoustic guitar and reserved vocals. Drums and bass arrive before 2 minutes. This is one of those songs that goes on for too long. "Renfield" is heavy to open then synths take over. A change after a minute as it becomes more urgent sounding. It kicks in at 2 minutes. Nice. Contrasts continue. Just a great sounding tune here.

"Don't Ruin The Memory" is mellow as vocals join in. Keys too. I really like the pulsating organ ala Banks that comes and goes. Good tune. "Soul Windows" opens with RUSH-like synths before it kicks in around a minute. This reminds me of ENCHANT. It settles with keys before 3 1/2 minutes then the guitar returns before 4 minutes. "Change My Mind" opens with prominant bass and guitar before the vocals arrive in this laid back soundscape. Like "Junk Drawer" this goes on for too long. "Existential Crisis" opens with spoken words before a Hendrix-like guitar melody takes over. A change before 3 minutes as a nice lazy guitar melody comes in, this continues until before 6 1/2 minutes. Organ then comes in then strummed guitar. The tempo picks up and vocals come in after 7 1/2 minutes. Check out the bass 9 minutes in as the sound gets heavier to the end. "Wayfarer" opens with guitar riffs as keyboards and drums join in.Vocals follow. Not a bad tune.

Lots to like here, it's too bad they broke up after this one. Worth checking out.

Report this review (#258433)
Posted Tuesday, December 29, 2009 | Review Permalink

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