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Supernal Endgame - Touch the Sky - Volume I CD (album) cover


Supernal Endgame

Crossover Prog

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Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This initial effort by Christian US proggers Supernal Endgame shows a lot of promise, at least if you don't get intimidated by this bands distinct worship-spiced variety of progressive rock.

Just about half the album draws the main inspirations from acts like Yes and Kansas, clearly and distinctly symphonic in style but perhaps not as sophisticated as the hardcore fans of this genre might like it. Shifting compositions exploring multiple themes is the name of the game for these efforts, but with just as much emphasis on vocals as instruments, the latter at times taking on more of a backdrop.

This is much more the case for the tracks exploring a more AOR-oriented sound on this disc. More distinctly mainstream oriented these efforts, such as Loving Embrace and Grail, are less challenging material in general and while pleasant enough doesn't really explore any new territories.

Those who have a hard time listening to religious music in general and Christian rock of the worship variety in particular better shy away from this disc though. These guys are proud believers who wants to share their joy with the world at large. And I would guess that this aspect of the CD is the one that will decide whether or not it'll be a success.

Report this review (#295184)
Posted Wednesday, August 18, 2010 | Review Permalink
kev rowland
Honorary Reviewer
4 stars This band is a project formed by multi-instrumentalist John Eargle, singer/drummer Rob Price and guitarist Dan Pomeroy. There are plenty of guests, including Roine Stolt and Randy George ? and given that these two are playing it is something of a surprise not to see Neal Morse's name as well, as these guys from Texas are working in the subgenre of Christian Prog. It shows how strong these guys beliefs are as prog in itself isn't the most financially rewarding genre out there, and if you aren't a Christian then you may find the lyrics a bit hard to take. But, and it is a large "but", this is an album that is great to listen to and one that I really enjoyed even though my personal view on religion has changed considerably over the years. There are three different guest violinist and this is an album that musically sits with Seventies Kansas but with a stronger emphasis on the AOR side.

This album is awash with hooks and melodies, and even a non-believer such as myself found myself singing along to "Still Believe" ? it's infectious stuff. The press release says something that I don't think I've ever seen in the thousands I've read, "this music just makes you feel good". Do you know what? They're right ? for some reason I can't play this album without having a smile on my face, and sometimes that boost is just what you need. Highly recommended to all.

Report this review (#807049)
Posted Saturday, August 18, 2012 | Review Permalink
4 stars Have you ever wondered what would happen if you took the contemporary gospel/indie pop played on an average Christian youth service by some more talented guys than the stuff they play would imply (at least if you're in US or Europe) and managed to sneak in a large dose of symphonic prog influences? Well, you probably haven't, but this album might be quite close to the ending result. If the concept doesn't spontaneously give you a loud thought of "What.. NO?!" or "UGH!", there's a good chance you might actually like this album. Supernal Endgame do their thing with both courage and taste, adding catchy melodies and lyrics closer to traditional worship music but also for balance lengthy instrumental sections, such as nice guitar and violin soolos or proggy keyboard patterns. Through the many upbeat sections there are also some very interesting varied rhytm patterns reminiscent for crossover prog, under which the artist is sectioned here in PA. The album is consistent and solid, and while it lacks the masterpiece quality it is quite easy to give it four stars with a big recommendation attached. Highlights: Still Believe, Expressions, You Reached Down
Report this review (#965467)
Posted Monday, May 27, 2013 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Supernal Endgame came to life in Dallas, Texas in 2000, when John Eargle and Rob Price decided to form a band, that would fuse spiritual lyrics with adventurous musicianship.They were joined at some point by guitarist Dan Pomeroy and several other members passed through the band's line-up, but it would be only in 2010, when the circumstances would be mature enough for launching an album.They would work as a trio at the time with Eargle singing, playing guitars and keyboards and Price providing lead vocals, additional keyboards and drumming.But this album would also include the presence and music skills of a handful of guest artists, like Roine Stolt and Randy George, the rest of the list contains some 10 names with three musicians playing the violin.''Touch the sky, vol.1'' was released on ProgRock Records.

The band itself characterized the sound as a mix of Symphonic and Pomp Rock and this is a pretty accurate description, if you should also add some AOR hints at places.With 80 minutes of recorded music, this would be a real bet for the Americans and the result is eventually impressively cohesive, memorable and well-crafted, drawing influences from acts like STYX, YES, KANSAS, RUSH and BOSTON, sounding close to Florida-based neighbours CRYPTIC VISION.For the most of its part the album is quite convincing, featuring tight songwriting and a fair dose of instrumental running minutes with mono- and polyphonic vocal arramgements and grandiose compositions, led mainly by layered synthesizers and punchy guitars.The material is extremely polished and refined with compositions passing through romantic lines and melodic themes to powerful orchestrations and flashy solos, while the sound is always flavored with piano interludes, folky violin drives and acoustic textures.The band did have an accesible and compact sound, but they performed their music usually via epic atmospheres and bombastic instrumental parts, thus the album holds a great balance from the start to the very end.A couple of pieces are definitely too AOR-spiced with heartfelt music and lyrics, but you will be rewarded by a pair of other, full-blown Prog celebrations with retro aesthetics, superb variations and extended instrumental moments with symphonic colors.

A succesful debut by the Dallas boys.Epic, grandiose yet melodic and memorable Prog Rock with religious lyrics, highlighted by a nice combination between modern and old music principles.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

Report this review (#1265734)
Posted Monday, September 1, 2014 | Review Permalink

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