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Flamborough Head - One for the Crow CD (album) cover

ONE FOR THE CROW

Flamborough Head

Neo-Prog


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Tarcisio Moura
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Sometime during 2000 and 2002 Flamborough Head lost its singer and guitarrist. It seemed that the band was through, which was a pity, since the two CDs they released were absolutely great and promised a bright furture for the group. But they did come back with a new line up, this time with female vocalist Margriet Boomsma (who also plays the flute) and guitarrist Eddie Mulder.

Needless to say, One For The Crow is quite different form their precedors. Fortunatly the changes did not harm what the band does best: songwriting and arrangements. In fact, they sound like almost another band, but still the tracks are all strong, the arrangements are tasteful and varied as ever. Keyboards are gorgeous! New guitarrist Mulder contributes with some acoustic guitars pieces, which are nice, and Boomsma´s flute adds some folk lines here and there. Her voice is quite unique, sounding maybe a bit like Tracy Hutchings (although less dramatic) or even a bit of Annie Haslam (the feeling, not the technique, around the Prologue period). Rhythm section is strong, well balanced and skillful without much showing off. Some Pink Floyd influences are more evident now in the guitar parts.

In the end you have a very fine album, with no fillers or weak songs anywhere. Less neo prog, more symphonjic and with some folkish bits. A strong and renewed come back. Flamborough Head is probably Holland´s most promising and strong band in the new millenium. Highly recommended!

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Send comments to Tarcisio Moura (BETA) | Report this review (#148277)
Posted Wednesday, October 31, 2007 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars A major change in the line-up took place for the recording of this album. Their previous keyboard player and lead vocalist has left and the band recruited a female singer to replace him. I was quite found of Siebe's smooth and peaceful voice. Not that Margriet Boomsma has an unpleasant one but it is always difficult to replace a good vocalist. And some people (to which I belong) need some time to get use to a new timber.

What's for sure is that the first two songs are excellent. Their symphonic angle is very much present and the keys during "Old Shoes" are very much "Banks" oriented. These two long songs (twenty-five minutes in total) are excessively pleasant. The vocal melody from "One for the Crow" is truely successful and so enjoyable.

Music is delicate and passionate. Margriet fitting very well in this new ensemble even if my preferred parts are the instrumental ones (if you would except "One for the Crow"). Both songs are highlights and an enchantment for any proghead.

"Day Dreams" is another beautiful piece of music. Fantastic guitar solo combined with very sweet fluting. Very close to the early "Camel". This instrumental song is one of my fave. Grandiose melody, a full symphonic song. A 24 carat jewel (especially the first half of it). The end is more on the folk side, I must say. Symphonic folk? Maybe.

The third long piece starts in a full neo-prog mood and is a bit directionless during its first third. A peasant guitar part at mid-time gives the start of another very good section. It is not as strong as "One For The Crow" or "Old Shoes", but the album is still sailing in very good territories. And so will it be as well during the pastoral "Old Forest".

Bombastic intro for "Limes Tone Rock" the fourth long number. Very much "In The Court." oriented (the song, not the album). After this short section, some inevitable comparison with "Renaissance" is made. As during "Nightlife", the mood will change several times. But most of the time, symphonic is the main stream.

"New Shoes" being another short and acoustic song. It closes this excellent album brilliantly.

Four stars. One of the best album from this band. And a pity that only one reviewer did post a commented review before mine. This album deserves more of your attention.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#153441)
Posted Saturday, December 01, 2007 | Review Permalink
Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Errors and Omissions Team
5 stars I heard few hundreds albums in my life. Nothing when compared to old rockers, but that's me, I'm young. But I've never heard anything like this. Absolutely (of course, I mean this word. I can explain it more if you ask nicely) terrific. Combination of strings driven (which can of course be just disguised keyboards), flavoured with unique sounds of guitars (every band uses different guitar, of course, some are similar, but this is special).

And interesting sound of main vocalist. As she's not native speaker, her singing gets nice accent, which is not annoying at all. No no, it's refreshing. Same as with entire album, full of symphonic rock. No, only thing which sounds neo-proggy here is piano. Well, grandly spoken, but still, I think that this band has more neo albums, which took them to this genre classification. This is not death metal, this is its opposite. Purpose of this album is to please (hehe, can be reason, why not after all, after long day at work, you could use some good, beautiful music.

Don't expect anything, and by anything I mean really nothing, dissonant, unpleasant, fear bringing and brown trousers making. Of course, a lot of bands are trying to reach this goal, ultimate symphonic album, melody over fear (lack of better words, I depleted them in previous sentence). I know that some people don't like melody and will lower rating to these (actually, I'm not targeting anyone, but statistic science is bi*ch, somebody would always have to be it). I don't do this kind of rating, or system of reviewing. I rate by my ears and brain, it's nice connection which works most of the time.

Many tried to do perfect, melodic album. But almost no one was able to hold melody line through entire album, I mean all the time, without losing quality (it's hard to have melodic things without other ones, like calm interludes, dissonant additions, to enlarge it all). And these are not some cheap ones, those that you heard (again, my usual pattern of 3TH words, "these","those"&"that", sometimes I also add "than" and "then", that would be completely ridiculous) many times.

5(+) for this unique gem, unkonwn symphonic album, which will be remembered a lot (by me). Every genre has its far sides, extremes if you please.

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Send comments to Marty McFly (BETA) | Report this review (#240326)
Posted Saturday, September 19, 2009 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Big changes for this one as two important members have left including the vocalist / keyboardist and the the guitarist. Enter a female vocalist who also playes flute / tin whistles and recorders.That alone constitutes a major change in sound right there. And for my taste this is definitely not for the better.There's also a lot of strings or orchestration which i'm guessing is sampled.

"One For The Crow" opens with the sound of a crow then the atmosphere and strings take over. It gets fairly heavy 1 1/2 minutes in then the vocals arrive after 2 minutes. She has a good voice i'm just not a fan of it. More strings as it settles.Vocals stop before 6 minutes as we get an instrumental break. She's back after 9 1/2 minutes. "Old Shoes" opens with synths and strings which gives us a classical feel that I don't like.Guitar, drums then piano come in. Vocals before 2 minutes.Tasteful guitar 4 minutes in when the vocals stop. It's heavier around 6 minutes. Strings come in. A calm a minute later with piano then the vocals return.The tempo continues to shft. "Seperate" is a short acoustic guitar piece with flute.

"Daydream" opens with acoustic guitar and strings? followed by flute then guitar 1 1/2 minutes in.There's a FLOYD flavour here then the flute returns. Piano only before 3 minutes then the acoustic guitar and drums are back. "Nightlife" opens with samples then it kicks in powerfully.Vocals 2 minutes in. A calm with piano and flute 4 minutes in. Strings too.It does pick up some late. "Old Forest" is a short track with acoustic guitar leading. "Limestonerock" opens with nature sounds then synths and a full sound follows.Guitar replaces the synths before a minute. It calms down with flute and vocals before picking back up. Another calm with atmosphere after 4 minutes. Flute joins in then drums and guitar before 6 minutes.Vocals are back 8 1/2 minutes. Nature sounds end it. "New Shoes" is a short piece that is led by the acoustic guitar.

There are so many things that have changed for the worse in my opinion. I am surprised at how high this is rated here, but hey we all have different tastes. Fans only for this one.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#385916)
Posted Monday, January 24, 2011 | Review Permalink
Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Flamborough Head's followup to Defining the Legacy seems like a little bit of a step down. Part of this is down to the production values - the Cyclops label seems to have had a rather variable history when it comes to recording quality and this time around Flamborough Head aren't particularly well-served by the production available to them. But beyond that, there's also the fact that the band were struggling to accommodate the changes to their lineup; new vocalist Margriet Boomsma gives a better performance on flute than on vocals, whilst on the whole the songwriting seems a bit less vibrant and tight than on the previous release.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#655802)
Posted Monday, March 12, 2012 | Review Permalink
kev rowland
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Crossover Team
4 stars This is the third album by the Dutch prog outfit, but their first with vocalist Margriat Boomsma (who also contributes recorders and flutes). This is album of great depth and contains influences and styles that grow on the listener the more it is played. Margriat has a voice in the style of Tracy Hitchings, with good range and power and harmonises well with guitarist Eddie Mulder. While the cop out is to say that Flamborough Head are a progressive rock band, it is much harder to decide on all of the musical strands that the band are bringing together.

The obvious ones are Pendragon and Pink Floyd, but there is also 'Wind & Wuthering' era Genesis, and even Gryphon to consider. It is an album of delicacy with plenty of space for the music to move, and is never intrusive but far more laid back. In many ways it is the perfect dreamy summer album, with the long instrumental passages showing not only the musical talents of the band but also how they react to each other. The direction can shift quite suddenly at times, but somehow it always manages to make sense.

There is a real feel of the Seventies and this is heightened by the use of delicate instrumental pieces, often just acoustic guitar and piano, which lead onto the longer songs. The electric guitar is rarely riffed but used instead to provide melodic leads, sometimes in harmony with the keyboards or providing a supporting role. A very enjoyable album indeed.

Originally appeared in Feedback #69, Aug 02

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Send comments to kev rowland (BETA) | Report this review (#978030)
Posted Friday, June 14, 2013 | Review Permalink

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