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Eclipse Sol-Air - Schizophilia CD (album) cover


Eclipse Sol-Air

Crossover Prog

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4 stars After falling head over heels in love with Eclipse Sol-Air's brilliant 2011 album Bartok's Crisis, I had high expectations for the follow up album Schizophilia. Reading somewhere that it was produced by Eloy'sFrank Bornemann raised the expectations even higher.

So the big question is: Does Schizophilia measure up to Bartok's Crisis?

Schizophilia is an album that in many ways is similar to its predecessor but at the same time it is also different. We again find a mixture of male and female vocal singing in different languages (English, German, French) and a multitude of musical styles covering a broad spectrum (Rock, Pop, Folk, Classic, etc) all poured into exciting arrangements. This wild mixture is again delivered by highly skilled musicians and sound to me as if they had fun doing this album.

Compared to Bartok's Crisis we find an album that sounds a bit more focused and structured. I guess the producer had some role to play here. As this might be regarded as an improvement, I personally feel an album was created that sounds a bit tamer and to some extent not as exciting as Bartok's Crisis. But don't get me wrong. Schizophilia is still a pretty dam good record and I can only recommend it! If you could for some strange reason only one album by Eclipse Sol-Air I would say, take Bartok's Crisis. If you can get your hands on both of them get both!

Report this review (#1160584)
Posted Saturday, April 12, 2014 | Review Permalink
kev rowland
Honorary Reviewer
4 stars Although it is a different artist for their third album, there is certainly a feeling that this going to carry on where the last one left off, and in a way it does. Of course Philippe Marie-Arnauld des Lions is back, but only co-singer Mireille Vicogne and guitarist Fritzh Hoffmeister return from the previous work. There aren't any guests this time either, and consequently there is a quite different sound as the multiple strings made quite an impact previously. The next thing I noticed is that this album is actually a great deal shorter than 'Bartok's Crisis' at just over 51 minutes in length, quite different to the 82 minutes last time around. The last album really worked due to its' sheer diversity and the listener never really knowing what was coming around the corner next whereas this one works as it is so direct and focused.

In many ways this is a much heavier album, but Horslips and Red Jasper are still influences, although possibly different eras of both. There is plenty of guitar, and still a lot to take in lyrically with songs in multiple languages, and sometimes multiple languages within the same song! No songs more than ten minutes long this time, and the complexity has been somewhat simplified, but this has been replaced with a stronger pop sensibility and there are plenty of hooks to be interested in. This is definitely the more immediate of the two albums and one that can be more easily enjoyed on the first play, but I have to confess to missing the sheer wildness and strangeness of the last one. But, this is still a damn fine album and anything short of 4 *'s would be just wrong. Another album well worth investigating

Report this review (#1174450)
Posted Monday, May 12, 2014 | Review Permalink

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