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4 stars Yacobs: Time Machine

Ulf Jacobs worked as a teacher at a private school for popular music and is active as a drummer in several bands ( Under the name "Yacobs" he also produces solo albums. With "time machine" he has already submitted his fourth CD. Words and music come from his pen, he uses drums and keyboards and sings with an expressive voice about the experiences of time traveling. "Time Machine" is a 40-minute prog rock suite, which consists of 12 carefully interwoven parts. Musically the album with lots of Mellotron, Moog and classic keyboard sounds was placed primarily in the field of symphonic prog rock, whose foundation was made by Genesis a.o. in the seventies. As a reference one could use "Duke", but the remaining three men didn`t placed their songs in the correct order at that time. Exactly that works here: Ulf sets the 12 parts of his work harmoniously and consciously together and created a multi-part suite. Songs and instrumental passages alternate, sometimes dominated by the melody, sometimes driven by the rhythm, again and again the thread is taken of the entire work and gets the tension of it all. Although one could point out a couple of outstanding parts, the album is yet to be heard from the beginning to the end, captivating, imaginative and full of nuances and should be seen as "one track". Beyond fashion trends a mental concept is transformed into sophisticated style and timeless music. And finally we came to the conclusion, we are the time itself - their Lord and prisoner at the same time.

Report this review (#556652)
Posted Tuesday, October 25, 2011 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Ulf Jacobs maybe better known as the drummer of German progsters Argos, but the truth is he's been measuring up his ability as a composer since the early-00's.As Yacobs, he released three solo albums on Gecko Records (''Still Love You'' (2001), ''Lifespan'' (2004) and ''Estella'' (2007)), all of them being Melodic/Pop Rock works with a few Prog elements.In 2010 he signed with Musea label, followed by his fourth album ''Time machine'', featuring contributions be Argos' bandmates Thomas Klarmann and Rico Florczak among others, while Jacobs plays all drums, piano and keyboard parts and sings.

The change of label was also followed by a change in Yacobs' sound, as ''Time machine'' is a great Progressive/Art Rock album with a few Pop hints added for good measure, somewhere along the lines of CHRIS, NEAL MORSE and T (aka Thomas Thielen).Jacobs manages to create some impressive atmospheric soundscapes, which contain also an efficient instrumental depth and pretty good songwriting.His more laid-back compositions are based on spacey synths, nice use of Mellotrons and acoustic guitars with a FLOYD-ian atmosphere, creating an overall melancholic mood.But the album contains also some great uptempo moments with more optimistic sounds, based on lovely piano interludes, intense vocal lines, groovy guitars and strong use of electronics in an impressive amalgam.''Time machine'' is also characterized by some nice melodic parts, grandiose symphonic textures and excellent coherence throughout to result a work, where atmosphere meets some very strong songwriting skills.

Another example that drummers can also be really great composers.Any lover of the aforementioned figures should purchase this album, that cant do anything else but impress the listener.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

Report this review (#940411)
Posted Sunday, April 7, 2013 | Review Permalink

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