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Signs Of One - Here and There, Now and Then CD (album) cover


Signs Of One

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3 stars Here and There, Now and Then was the debut album for the young Canadian band Signs of One. Came by it at the record store and decided to give it a try. Good decision, for this is a quite interesting release.

I am not sure how this band ended up being classified as "prog-related" because from what I can hear, they are genuinely prog. Influences appear to range from Rush to Fish-era Marillion, with some psych, classic and metal touches. Overall, this is an album best described as "heavy neo-prog".

The compositions are fairly complex, with several movements and nice melodies. The flows are nicely done as the songs go from mood to another mood very smoothly.

Honestly, this is an album with virtually no filler (only the fifth track Please seemed to me that it could have been shorter) and with a number of great moments. The epic War (clocks at 16:39) is brilliant on the whole. Very recommendable track, as good as prog can get. The lively opener Ice Cream Silence, as well as the sublime and inspired long guitar solo closing the album, also make for excellent musical moments.

Actually, I find that if this album has a significant weakness, it lies in the audio quality, something that oft happens with newcoming bands recording their first release. Thus a 4 or 5 stars rating is not accessible. The sound product is not at a pro level but nevertheless, I quickly forgot about it after a minute. I think this is an album worth trying, especially for heavy prog or neo-prog fans, whereas those who might be even more picky than me with the sound may elect to avoid it. Pretty good album overall.

Report this review (#236763)
Posted Thursday, September 3, 2009 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Quebec-based new Prog group, formed in 1997 as Hannibal by schoolmates drummer Phil Prince and guitarist Steeve Tremblay.It wasn't until 1998, when the seeds of a more stable formation were set with Daniel Gagnon joining in on bass and David Schram handling the microphone.They played music inspired by the likes of Rush, The Ramones and Radiohead, while in 1999 they change their name to Signs Of One.By the millenium Yannick Lapointe had joined the band on keyboards and what follows were two years of cover songs, rehearsals related to original pieces and several gigs.In 2003 Signs Of One launched their debut ''Here and there, now and then'' on Ipso Facto Records.

Compatriots RUSH is the most obvious influence of the band, but their sound was actually fairly comparable to the style of Americans 3RDEGREE.They use the unusual dynamics and breaks of the Canadian legends along with the deep and powerful rhythmic patterns, featuring an aggressive, young vocalist, but their music goes beyond these limits.Atmospheric, melodic guitar solos along the lines of MARILLION, poppy sensibilities in some memorable choruses, guitar/keyboard textures in the vein of ENCHANT and even some slight Alternative Rock aesthetics in series of crunchy electric riffs showcase the band's depth and mood for exploring new territories.The CD contains only six tracks for a total running time of just less than an hour, so prepare for a couple of long epics, where the young Canadians display their already mature style of composing and playing.These pieces not only feature the aforementioned Heavy Rock stylings or the more accesible Neo Prog feel, but there are even hints of a more vintage approach with clear 70's influences, KAYAK and PINK FLOYD are definitely two names to come in mind through the lovely Symphonic Pop passages or the more emotional, electric soundscapes.The material can switch from mascular guitar riffing to ultra-melodic themes with comfort, without hurting the consistency of any of the presented tracks, and this fact alone make Signs Of One a group with a pretty personal and charming sound.

Little-known but very cohesive and diverse work of modern Prog Rock.Heavy/Neo Prog with Pop and modern Rock touches, wrapped up in confident and detailed arrangements.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

Report this review (#1265518)
Posted Sunday, August 31, 2014 | Review Permalink

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