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The Flower Kings - Adam & Eve CD (album) cover

ADAM & EVE

The Flower Kings

Symphonic Prog


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richardh
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars This latest album from one of Sweden's finest prog ensembles.I'm pleased to report that this maintains the very high standards of earlier releases.It's nothing new stylistically but the power of the band shines through while the music is well constructed.Best track is appropriately the title track 'Adam and Eve'.Drummer Zoltan Csorsz drives the music impressively here and throughout the entire album.For me the best prog release of the year so far with the added bonus of a great cover!

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Send comments to richardh (BETA) | Report this review (#31975)
Posted Tuesday, July 27, 2004 | Review Permalink
diddy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars The Flower Kings, a band wich tends to have a strange mixture of awfully awesome songs and poor filler material. At times brilliant and sometimes boring, no the Flower Kings are not easy. But because most of their tunes are very good and interesting I also bought their new release "Adam & Eve". And what can I say? Well, I was surprised, affirmatively surprised. Almost no boring filler material on this one, no double album. And the best thing about the new release, Daniel Gildenlöw, mastermind of "Pain of Salvation" seems to be a kind of official member now. That's what Jonas Reingold said to me in a chat. Furthermore Daniel is not listed as guest (He's listet among the other guys) and appears on the band photo in the booklet, evidence enough for me. If you read my review for Pain of Salvation's "Entropia" you will know what I think about him as a singer. I thnink Daniel has one of the best voices of the whole prog genre. And the fact that his voice is featured on this release is reason enough for me to buy this record.

The disc is clutched to it's maximum, 77 minutes of partly outstanding music. The opener "Love Supreme" is an almost 20 minutes epic featuring all three singers, Stolt, Gildenlöw and Frödberg. It's a typical Flower Kings epic containing awesome solos and some odd parts. But in general the jazzy parts wich could be heard on "Unfold the Future" are almost non-existent on "Adam & Eve", it seems as if you get more guitar solos and heavier parts instead. I liked the jazz-parts on the last output but I also like the new kind of sound and the solos wich are featured now. The second song "Cosmic Circus" is one of those songs I don't like this much. It's a short one and isn't really bad or beyond all bearing but it's the kind of Flower Kings sound I personally don't like. "Babylon" is a short instrumental written by Tomas Bodin. It is a short and nice one and builds up a kind of eagerness. Not without legal cause because the next song "A vampires View" really blew me away. It's one of the best songs I heard lately. Not very usual for the Flower Kings. Daniel Gildenlöw sings the whole song and what can I say? I simply love this voice, Daniel is a great singer and there's no better voice to represent the character of a vampire. The song creates a great atmosphere and if you close the eyes it might cause goose bumps. Jonas Reingold nails a great performance here as well as Daniel of course. In the end the whole song gets more odd with some awesome instrumental parts and solos, awesome indeed, maybe the best Flower Kings song since a long time, also due to Gildenlöw. "Days gone by" is a short piano solo by Tomas Bodin, it really reminds me of "The ballerina is not getting closer" from his solo release "Pinup Guru", nice one but rather short. The title track also seems to break new ground, at least in the beginning. The song is much heavier than earlier tunes. The singing seems different, Daniel again performs some great lines. After the long instrumental part wich again is typical for the Flower Kings it gets more mellow just to end like it started. An awesome song again with some Gildenlöw vocals, watch out for his screams, quite high for a male voice, cool. Ok, "Starlight Man", the second song I don't like. It's again one of those FK songs wich don't hurt but, I don't know, are rather boring. But again, just 3 minutes fortunately. "Timelines" is a typical Flower Kings song featuring some great atmosphere and beautiful guitar solos. The second 19 minute epic "Drivers Seat" is another highlight of the album. It's typical FK with Roines beautiful guitar solos. But it also features some Bodin-parts reminding me of his quite experimental solo album "Pinup Guru". Again, Gildenlöw's vocals assign a highlight of this song. I also think that the main melody-line is really nice. "The blade of cain" is a 5 minute instrumental and closes the album perfectly, nice guitar solos here, it reminds me of the "Unfold the Future" bonus track "too late for tomatoes" wich I really love. It features a short and muted vocal reprise but can still be described as an instrumental. One thing I have to mention is Zoltan Csörsz's drumming and Jonas Reingold's bass. The two friends seem to get better and better with every record, awesome performances. The percussion work is not as present as on "Unfold the Future" but still audible and still more than other bands have to offer.

So "Adam & Eve" is a bit different, mainly due to Daniel Gildenlöw and the missing jazzy parts but still remains typical. I think that this album is not as good as "Unfold the Future" but still one of the better ones. "A vampires view" is an awesome song with a terrific vocal performance and atmosphere, a true highlight. I think that it is no fault to purchase this record if you like other Flower Kings stuff. If you don't liked the Flower Kings because of the boring filler material this record may please you, almost no fillers this time. So "Adam & Eve" is another good album from this great band. The step to feature more of Daniel Gildenlöw was the best thing they could do, I hope I will see him live with the band in October now as he is an official member. 3.5 Stars

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Send comments to diddy (BETA) | Report this review (#31976)
Posted Thursday, July 29, 2004 | Review Permalink
4 stars If you're a prog lover and haven't heard The Flower Kings, I suggest you check them out post-haste. In terms of musicianship they're probably one of the most accomplished bands around. What makes them special is, they can turn their hand to virtually any style of music and play it with authority and conviction. This, their 9th CD in as many years (not counting solo and side projects) is an absolute killer. Unlike their last release the 2 CD set 'Unfold the Future' this one is concise and has no second-rate songs to clog up the works. The first track ' Love Supreme' is a 20 minute tour de force with more than a hint of Yes/Jon Anderson about it. As usual the guitar and keyboard playing is exquisite. (Tomas Bodin really is the most tasteful and inventive keyboard player around at the moment. I recommend his three solo albums ) The second part of the song features some very soulful vocals from Hasse Froberg, and new member Daniel Gildenlow. Of special note is the amazing, almost Queen-like, massed backing vocals. The second track is one of those short but moving and uplifting songs that The Flower Kings do so well. Nice drumming on this song. The third track is a short instrumental done in the style of Genesis 'In that quiet earth'. If you like this track, you'll love Tomas Bodin's solo albums. The next track, 'Vampires view' is a slight departure for the band: the first thing that came to mind when I heard this song was, Peter Hammill. Daniel Gildenlow's vocal (I think it's him) has some very Hammillesque qualities about it on this track -- very theatrical and melodramatic. There's some incredible bass playing towards the end of the song, too. In fact the bass playing is exceptional throughout, with more than a hint of Chris Squire about it -- Chris Squire meets Scott Thunes is probably the best way to describe his playing. The track segues into a short piano piece that captures very nicely a sort of transylvanian mood to compliment the lyrics of the previous track. The title track is a heavy rocker with a twist. Once again the rhythm section is awesome. 'Starlight Man' is another short but catchy song, with Froberg singing in his best Jon Anderson voice. This is probably the weakest song on the CD, but it is short and rather infectious. 'Timelines' is a strange, moody almost bluesy(but not quite) song full of interesting percussion interjctions,played by Hasse Brunniuson. 'Drivers seat' is another longish track (18 minutes) that gives drummer Zoltan Csorsz room to show off his considerable chops and technique. The final track is a majestic instrumental. Originally conceived as the ending to the title track, it makes a rather nice ending to a most excellent CD. Altogether a very uplifting and exhilarating experience from one of the best bands on the planet.

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Send comments to The Mentalist (BETA) | Report this review (#31977)
Posted Wednesday, August 04, 2004 | Review Permalink
olpa@tele2.fr
5 stars hello unfold the future was, for me, a real masterpiece. i like daniel's vocals and the fabulous rhythm section with the jazz rock dimension. devils playground, rolling the dice are marvellous. i was very exciting to listen the new cd for the 1st time but, in fact, i was terribly deceived. return to the much classic music as on "rainmaker" but after 10 listenings i've to admit it's certainly my favorite with "unfold" in a more classic rock way i like the epics "drivers seat"'with hasse froberg vocals and rock section which remembering me some stuff of the who on who's next and quadrophenia. other epic "love supreme" is also very good and i like metal mind in "adam& eve" with daniel's vocals.in conlusion, it's really a very good record you have too listen for many times to like it. olpa "excuse me for my english"

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#31978)
Posted Friday, August 13, 2004 | Review Permalink
heberduarte@y
2 stars My God... What did happened to Mr. Roine Stolt??? This is the WORST work from the Flower Kings I ever heard!!! I never thought that after the very good "Unfold the Future" they could commit an album so weak... Let's begin for the open track, the 1st suite, "Love Supreme". When the music enters you think you're hearing a YES album, but not in the vein of the seventies or the YES of the "Keys" albuns... It's something like the poor and weak "Open Your Eyes" album... This song is very uninspired and have no great variations, and this could not happen in a song with almost 20 minutes!!! The 2 songs from keyboardist T. Bodin ("Babylon" & "Days Gone By") are innocuous... 2 little inoffensive pieces of complete emptyness... (when I think that the same guy made great songs like "Dream On Dreamer" and "Rumble Fish Twist" or some great melodies in the "Flower Power" suite...). And there's the track "Vampire's View" where unfortunately we hear the melodramatic (and sometimes comic) voice of Mr. Gildenlöw. The same artifice that he puts on the songs of Pain of Salvation... ok, it can works with his heavy metal band, but NOT with The Flower Kings... What is this, Mr. Stolt? You been influenced by your bad pupils??? And Mr. Gildenlöw, please get out of the Flower Kings, this band can't be infected by your "metal" roots, and like a fan I am not interested in a third vocalist... Ok, but there's good tracks in this record, in your majority by their second half... The good title track brings some hard rock in the right dose. The songs "Cosmic Circus" and "Starlight Man" are nice works with good melodies. "Timelines", a composition of J. Reingold with Mr. Stolt it's innovative and really works. And the second suite of the album, "Drivers Seat", is very better than "Love Supreme". But in the end... it's a sad testimony to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the band. I hope for the next album that Mr. Stolt don't invitate Mr. Gildenlöw anymore. And that he makes something so wonderfull like "Back in the World of Adventures" or "Flower Power"...

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#31979)
Posted Sunday, August 15, 2004 | Review Permalink
heracliusjp@h
4 stars As a Flower Kings´ unconditional Fan since "The Flower King", I rate this last release as "Excellent addition to any prog rock collection" but actually the best I can say is we have a nice fistful of songs. When I say nice I say exactly that: NICE, no more. I respect Mr. Stolt´s hard work and that´s why I´ll be constructive in my critizism saying Adam & Eve is no more than a nice record. I find good reasons to listen to it once and again, but when I listen to parts of ideas or pieces from previous FK works (those parts are quite remarkable), even from Kaipa works, I actually think Mr. Stolt should forget much of his also weak side-projects, go to the high sierra, sit down with himself quietly (maybe with a Zen Monk alongside him) and talk frankly and directly to the Flower King there in Retropolis: "I´m tired, my Lord, the pond is almost dry...I don´t know what to do now to shock the audience". And then The Flower King would answer: "My son, look truly inside you and all that´s left is done". ;o) Seriously, if Mr Stolt would sit down calmly to write new songs everything would go better. I´m ready to wait for 4 or 5 years for a new Stardust We Are. SwA and FP stablishes a peak of talent a top of mastery, but since then TFK are affering a 60% of outcomes. I need the feeling again, the plot thread throughout the pieces. You cannot impress the "soul" in a patchwork "epic" 20-minute song if your write it down in th same 20 minutes.

But I steel keep the faith...

Greetings from Seville (Spain)

JPe

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#31980)
Posted Sunday, August 15, 2004 | Review Permalink
Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This might be an album with controversy. Last week, I got messages in my mobile phone from my prog friends Rizal (visiting Hong Kong) and Koni. Rizal had a great complaints of this album as it has lost the "soul" of TFK while Koni is the other way round: love the album at first spin. So I got confused and curious to know more. I got Rizal's cd with me and I spin it . oh boy .. I love the album at first spin! Then I spin it four times in its entirety, and this is my view in details:

What a fantastic track "Love Supreme" is! Yeah . it has all ingredients of prog music: dynamic, complex, shifting tempos. I love this track at first spin of the CD. Couple of reasons on why I love it: first, the accompanying music - dynamic, ambient, atmospheric with tight bass guitar - is unique the Flower Kings music. Second, the drumming is dominant and varies widely across musical segments with multi-beats. Third, the use of instruments to lead some segments are dominant but balance between guitars and keyboards. All of the above factors have summed up to en excellent musical composition of this track. As I walk through my journey into this epic track of approx 20 minutes I don't feel any sense of inconsistency in this composition as I finally aware that I'm in the 16th minute of this track and I don't feel bored to wait another 4 minutes to conclude the track. Is it the kind of Yes' "Close to The Edge"? Dunno exactly .. but that's what I feel, this track is really excellent and very enjoyable. This track has the climax enjoyment as well, which happens at minutes 17 onwards. Fabulous! Amazing! Great work, Mr. Stolt!

"Cosmic Circus" is a relatively short track with its music flows naturally, great drumming and keyboard. I enjoy the drumming and voice singing of this track. It continues to the next short instrumental track "Babylon" which is keyboard based with tight bass line, soft lead guitar play during interlude.

"A Vampire View", as the title implies, starts with a night conditioning of the music followed by a monologue in vampire's style (?). When the music enters, it's so nice and flows as usual TFK music and then goes back to opening style. This kind of style is like an opera act - but may make you bored as the music sometime goes silent. I don't have any problem with it. Even, I enjoy it as I watch "Van Helsing" movie. Again, I find the drumming, piano and lead guitar are excellent. I like the last 2 minutes part of this track where electric guitar and keyboard take the lead. Wonderful composition!

"Adam and Eve" really rocks!! I love it very much! It's prog, it's complex, and ... it's fantastic. It has a punchy keyboard playing and dazzling bass guitar (WOW! Excellent bass guitarring, Jonas! Thank you for creating this nice piece of music). For me this track still has the soul of TFK music. Again the last part of this song is a climax that gives ultimate enjoyment for rockers. "Timeliness" is another rocking track!

I don't wanna go track by track of this album as the rest of the tracks are all excellent tracks! It has another epic track "Drivers Seat" and excellent concluding track "The Blade of Cain". "Driver's Seat" is a track that you may need to put attention to. It's uplifting, powerful, complex and wonderful. Again, I have noticed the drumming is so dynamic in this track, great bass line. This is the kind of prog music that I really love and you may too, I guess. You have no reason for not loving this album, really!

My recommendation is: BUY this CD! Even, you won't regret by having "Love Supreme" and "Driver's Seat" alone that you like listening to. But, don't worry .. at least I can guarantee there are 5 other tracks that are worth enjoying. For me, all tracks are excellent and I enjoy listening to it in its entirety. This album is a masterpiece and it will be with the passage of time. Rating 4.75 / 5 - Gatot Widayanto, Indonesia.

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Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#31982)
Posted Tuesday, August 17, 2004 | Review Permalink
daniel.reichb
3 stars AlthoughI could neverimaginign The Flower Kings making a *bad* album, this one excites me less than most other TFK records. Doubtlessly, "Adam & Eve" has it's moments (I especially love the extraordinary "Cosmic Circus"/"Babylon" medley), but as a whole, the album isa bitt too conveniant. I prefer it when The Flower Kings throw themselves between the musical expressions, as they do on my thre fav records, "Space Revolver", "Unfold the Future" and "Stardust We Are".

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#31983)
Posted Wednesday, August 25, 2004 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is probably the most consistent and lyrical album the Flower Kings have put out to date. It may even challenge Stardust We Are in the sheer beauty and inspiration of the compositions, but I am treading dangerous waters here... however, I can say with absolute certainty that this is the best album since The Rainmaker. The sound is tighter, the feel is more relaxed yet more focused, the sophistication is almost too high for a rock band (they are a rock band after all). But best of all are the memorable and heartfelt melodies in each song - you will remember most from the first listen. The music seems to gush forth in one uninterrupted flow, even the long tracks do not seem that long. There is no filler material here at all; all compositions are top notch, some standing out - like the mighty Driver Seat, the glowing Babylon, the romantically dark Vampire's View, the breathtaking Love Supreme... What can I add? I hate to use the old cliche "no progressive rock collection is complete without this album", but what the hell, I'll say it - no progressive rock collection is complete without this album!

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Send comments to EMinkovitch (BETA) | Report this review (#31995)
Posted Wednesday, September 08, 2004 | Review Permalink
apenguin415@Y
4 stars I think Adam & Eve is the beginning of what may be a grand success. I loved the strong material on Unfold The Future, such as Silent Inferno, Genie In a Bottle, and Devil's Playground, but songs like Vox Humana bored me to tears, and while the Truth Will Set You Free has it's moments, it doesn't make my top 25 Flower Kings songs. Road to Sanctuary and World Without a Heart are classic Rainmaker numbers, but the rest of the record was uneven at best. Space Revolver and Stardust We Are is the standard by which I measure the new albums, and after finding the last 2 studio efforts disappointing, I am thrilled with Adam & Eve. This may be the best constructed TFK disc yet. Love Supreme sets the theme for the record, and then each song builds on what came before until the title track kicks it up severel notches. By the way, the words to Adam and Eve are the funniest things Roine has written since I am the Sun Part 2. Anyhow, from Adam and Eve on, this record just smokes. This is definately one of the bands most consistant efforts, perhaps the most consistant since Retropolis, and Daniel Gildenlow sounds as if he's been with the group forever. Furthermore the rhythm section of Jonas and Zotan continues to impress me with each new effort. I think the only think I would have liked more is to hear more of Roine's voice, he has a tonal quality that fits the music better than any of the others, but then he writes the songs, so that's no great surprise. This isn't the Flower Kings best work, but it's definately one of the better ones, and from a group with their talent and sense of adventure, that's a great album in anyone's book.

One last note. You cannot possibly listen to any Flower Kings record once or twice and absorb it. It took me a good month to really get into Garden of Dreams, and none of their records will really impress with a casual listen. When you've heard Adam and Eve 10 or more times, you're probably starting to get it. Enjoy!

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#31986)
Posted Wednesday, September 08, 2004 | Review Permalink
iilnd@yahoo.c
4 stars Masterpiece, but not on the high music level of Unfold The Future, which I don't believe they will ever reach. Sax is seriously missing. Actually this album contains 5 songs - "Love supreme"; "Vampire's view"; "A & E", "Timelines" and "Driver's Seat" of which "Vamp's View" is the real prog song for this album. And Mr. Stolt's voice is seriously missing too... There could be at least 5 more songs for a prog band, which is meant to be most talanted and geniuos instead of new Tangent album and other nubberless side projects of the bandmembers. Nevertheless it remains worth hearing it and enjoying it.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#31988)
Posted Thursday, September 16, 2004 | Review Permalink
VampiroAngeli
5 stars Entirely awesome! As simple as that. TFK have released their best effort ever, to my advice. I completely disassociate from those reviewers who nitpick their music, calling it uninspired, boring, convenient (?).... I loved it since my very 1st listen and yes, it does bring to 70's Genesis and Yes memories, but that, ladies and gentlemen, is the biggest reason why I listen to progressive rock, simply because Yes and Genesis are and have been incapable of giving us quality CDs since the early 80's, so now we have bands like TFK, Spock's Beard (until Neal Morse left)and Marillion (which, by the way, don't sound like Genesis since Fish left, but Steve Hogarth is the most awesome singer ever). I like everything about the album, and the more I will listen to it, the more I'm sure I'll keep finding likeable details about this masterpiece. I like Roine's guitar style, as it's never boring or repetitive, keys are the most progressive I have heard in a long time....probably since Spock's Beard's Beware Of Darkness.... Incredible, as always, bass and drums. The opener Love Supreme sounds like Yes, a little bit like from the Going For The One album, which is a great thing for a progressive band, and will make me like them all the more. I love the idea of having a whole song (or most of it) in 9/4 tempo, keeping the same tempo even during the changes in dynamics and arrangements. Absolutely brilliant! Great prog idea! Listening to the chorus, you almost have the feeling Jon Anderson's voice is in there, somewhere in the mix. Cosmic Circus is opening with a happy melody, on a simple chord progression, made very interesting by the background vocals and the always interesting TFK lyrics. Babylon tastes a lot like Genesis, and it's Wind & Wuthering time again! Grandiose Tony Banks influenced keyboard and Steve Hackett style guitars. A Vampire's View is priceless. Really makes you feel as if you are part of the story told, since the very beginning. Days Gone By brings me back to the 1800's, as if I was walking around a castle, searching for my youth....too bad this piano song is too short. Adam & Eve kicks some serious heavy metal ass! I love the high notes on the vocals! Starlight Man is a more intimate song, with a Yes-like chorus. Love it! Timelines almost takes a little bit of King Crimson-meets Gong-meets Gentle Giant-meets Jethro Tull. Drivers Seat, ladies and gentlemen, starts up in huge Genesis style!! Again, Wind & Wuthering and A Trick Of A Tail are the influence on here. Probably my favorite tune, as I'm the biggest Genesis nostalgic person ever! I get chills down my spine! After about 2 minutes and 30 seconds, the song takes up on a totally different style, great surprise. The Blade Of Cain is a TFK classic ending, great prog melodies! To me, no doubt, the album is a total 10! I wish there were more progressive bands like them. The last Dream Theater was very disappointing and Spock's Beard did lose their personality (Neal Morse).

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#31990)
Posted Friday, September 17, 2004 | Review Permalink
YYZ
2 stars I've been a FLower Kings fan for quite a while now and have been thoroughly impressed by previous FK releases (although I'm yet to like a FK album completely). Albums such as Flower Power, Stardust We Are, Space Revolver, Rainmaker and half of Unfold The Future absolutley blew me away. Then I find out that Daniel Gildenlow has become a fully fledged member of the Flower Kings. Being a Pain of Salvation fan I welcomed this news and with much anticipation looked forward to this release.

I was disappointed. It lacks pace as the songs seem to meander and are seemingly played at too slow a tempo. I find the melodies rather opaque and uninspiring. Even the exciting moments have been heard before in some guise on previous FK albums. I really feel that they have kind of lost their grip on this album. I've heard this album now a few times and really want to like it...but I can't. It's a little too bland for me.

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Send comments to YYZ (BETA) | Report this review (#31991)
Posted Thursday, October 07, 2004 | Review Permalink
loserboy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Another stunning FLOWER KINGS album to come from the gang out at the Cosmic Lodge. I will admit that I am a big fan of these guys and think that they are still one of the premiere prog bands going around. I really think folks are way way too critical and have unrealistic expectations on TFK's which I don't share the same opinion generally speaking. Opening track "Love Supreme" is a 20 mins epic beauty with some fantastic song writing and musicianship bubbling over. On "Adam & Eve" the regular cast of musicians are present with the addition of a new vocalist Daniel Glidenlow (PAIN OF SALVATION) who brings a new look and feel (and sound dimension) to the band. As you might expect the music is ever changing and flowing with symphonic grandeur and positive colour throughout. STOLT's guitar playing is excellent as is BODIN's keyboard work offering some fantastic musical excursions. Overall a very strong album from the FLOWER KINGS and an album I am playing the heck out of these days.

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Send comments to loserboy (BETA) | Report this review (#31993)
Posted Saturday, November 20, 2004 | Review Permalink
toby.j@privat
5 stars OK, I know about the rating policy here on Progarchives but nevertheless it has to be five of them for this one! Becuase this is one breathtaking piece of music from my all-time favourites. Yes they differ from the jazzier way I wanted them to continue from UTF but what the heck! It's nice with a musician (i.e. mr. Stolt) who surprises you everytime and is strong enough to follow his own course in creating eternally good music!

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#32001)
Posted Wednesday, November 24, 2004 | Review Permalink
sytim@yahoo.c
4 stars I think this one is more cohesive than most of their previous relaeses. It just seems a more complete sound...a more complete album.

On the first hearing "Love Supreme" didn't do anything for me...but after I played a few times it really came through. I love it now and I cannnot stop listening to it. It has great musical depth, some fine playing and writing and even the odd time-signature of the first part seems to roll and swing in an irresistable way.

"Starlight Man" is another great song. It is almost pop, but so what! Great catchy tune. Other highlights are "Drivers Seat", "Vampires View" and "Timelines"...but all the tracks fit the whole.

Playing and production is more refined on this album, i think...and it benefits from not being a double...I like it.

Sytim

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#31994)
Posted Sunday, December 19, 2004 | Review Permalink
menelaos@meta
4 stars I won't comment extensively on this CD, as the other reviewers have by now pretty much given the picture.... This is an excellent album, with some really good music in it! From the short est tracks like "Cosmic Circus" to the epics, like the opening "Love Supreme", this album is just a gem! Also, you're bound to be surprised by the sound a few times. For example "A Vampire's View" and the titletrack will give you a completely different viewing angle over The Flower Kings... Don't even think twice, just go out and buy this little diamond!

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#31998)
Posted Monday, January 24, 2005 | Review Permalink
Muzikman
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars I listened to this album so many times I lost track, and you know why? Because this is The FLOWER KINGS, one of the most captivating and entrancing progressive rock bands in the world; let me rephrase that, consistently one of the best bands in the world. Every year they release another unrivaled masterpiece and "Adam & Eve" is no exception. I must admit I was a little disappointed at first because I expected another double album set to enjoy. I am very spoiled, previous releases have been amazing double discs sets.

The cover art of this album is as striking as it is thought provoking. The evidence is apparent on the cover for all to see, the bite out of the forbidden fruit is glowing and it literally links the sinful couple together. Adam looks as though he has been on a steady diet of steroids, a modern day Neanderthal, while the beautiful and delicate Eve looks borderline anorexic. They take themes from the old and new for this interesting musical adventure. The age-old dark and evil vampire makes his presence known in "A Vampires View" and "The Blade of Cain" is a page out of the TFK musical bible as only they can tell the story.

This album is a little more structured and even keeled than what you would expect, yet the musicianship is outstanding. Those wonderful YES influences are still intact, which makes me a very happy listener. The mixture of rock, jazz and fusion is beyond compare, quite unlike anything anyone else is doing these days. Besides life long special guest Hasse Bruniusson, the band has added yet another spectacular and welcome addition to the fold, the amazing vocalist from PAIN OF SALVATION, Daniel Glidenlöw. I must say, Roine STOLT is getting wiser and craftier with each passing year, making his band better every time they set foot in the studio.

What can I say? The FLOWER KINGS have done it again; they have released one of the best albums of the year. I would be willing to bet the next project ends up being a two or three album set, and why not? At the rate this band records it is entirely possible. There is no doubt they are enjoying a creative peak and riding the crest of that wave, and I see no end to it, which is good news for all of us prog heads.

Rating: 4.75/5

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Send comments to Muzikman (BETA) | Report this review (#31999)
Posted Monday, January 24, 2005 | Review Permalink
mokoma666@jip
2 stars After the horrible Unfold The Future I was expecting Adam & Eve to be sort of "back to the roots" album (like Stolt promised himself). Well, that's what they did, but very badly. The album contains symphonic progressive rock (like the excellent Stardust We Are and Back In The World Of Adventures) but the ideas are dry and songs full of cliches. Especially the epics were big disappointments. Driver's Seat is a flow of pointless rock riffs and old prog-melodies and the "main epic" Love Supreme is a joke: we've got here about three pop-songs clued together plus a typical pompous prog-ending. I got tired of these epics after just a few listening. But in the other hand, I'm glad that they didn't add their trying-to-be-jazzy-jams (like on UTF) here to make the music even worse. I guess the only truelly qualified jazz-musician in the band is Jonas Reingold (and Tomas Bodin in his own perverse way), so it is really horrible when Mr. Stolt comes jamming along to ruin everything with his guitar licks as always happens. We don't even have Ulf Wallander questing on the album and filling in his tasty jazz solos. The Flower Kings is not a jazz band, so at least they have made something right on this album. But anyway, Adam & Eve offers nothing new for the progressive rock scene and I guess Roine Stolt has ultimately run out of ideas so there'll be no more good TFK albums in the future to wait for.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#32002)
Posted Friday, February 04, 2005 | Review Permalink
hdfisch
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars After the very courageous and experimental UNFOLD THE FUTURE fans were wondering what the follow-up will sound like. And depending which side of the band, the more progressive or the melodic one, they favour their expectations were different. I love very much the previous one, which was a fully progressive album and of course if one would have expected something similar coming up, one must be definitely disappointed by ADAM & EVE. But hey one moment, it's not that a bad one, disregarding the really awful artwork. I would say the album is very versatile and contains quite a lot of different stuff.

Some typical melodic lengthy epic songs like the very YESsy , but not that much convincing Love Supreme and Driver's Seat, of which I prefer the latter one, as well some quite heavy ones like the Little Rocky Horror Picture Show, A Vampire's View with a great expressionistic Daniel Gildenlöw on vocals or the title song. Unfortunately there are as well some songs, which are really not offering anything new and therefore sounding a bit boring, like Cosmic Circus (seams these terms are Roine's favourite ones for song titles) and Starlight Man, the worst one of the album, I would say. Then there is a quite short instrumental Babylon by Tomas Bodin which is a very nice one with a fantastic melody. but nothing special in fact. Days Gone By with its piano sound is in some way quite a nice bridge between the most progressive and heavy tracks of the album. Timelines cannot keep the promises made by the rather "crimsy" progressive beginning and is becoming very shallow and boring during its further course. And finally there is the last song The Blade Of Cain which is a quite good bombastic one with some nice tension in the beginning. About the performance of all musicians there isn't anything to criticize, they are playing perfectly as usually. As well production is excellent like always. The nicest surprise of this album for me was the welcome of Daniel Gildenlöw as a permanent group member. I love what he's doing together with the other guys of P O S. Welcome as a king, Daniel and keep on pleasing us with your brilliant music now even in two bands!

As a summary ADAM & EVE is for sure not another UNFOLD THE FUTURE, but as well not a really bad album. Highlights are of course A vampire's view and the title song which are both quite different from anything they did before and the long one Driver's Seat which offers the usual beloved TFK-sound. The rest of the songs are rather mediocre I've got to say. It's a good but probably not an essential one in general. Good for 3 stars!

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Send comments to hdfisch (BETA) | Report this review (#32003)
Posted Sunday, February 27, 2005 | Review Permalink
Hangedman
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars This is a hard review to write because its a good album, great musicians vocalists and composition (silly lyrics but I suppose that is acceptable). The biggest problem with it, however is that it is not terribly interesting. For something so long and seemingly ambitious they dont tread any new ground. When I browse my albums it never catches my eye, I only play it now just because I feel obligated since I payed for it.

The highlight of the album would be the title track, it manages to not tread to deeply into lameness and I adore the singing. The Biggest musical problems with the album are the length, and the occaisonal dip into annoying lyrics.

Id suggest it for the prog buffs out there who want to diversify into more modern things, but not really for newcomers.

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Send comments to Hangedman (BETA) | Report this review (#32004)
Posted Sunday, March 06, 2005 | Review Permalink
Cygnus X-2
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars When I was browsing through Best Buy (American chain of electronics stores) yesterday, I wasn't expecting to find anything Prog related that was something I was looking for (Besides Rush, Yes, and Pink Floyd). Then I browse through the F's and find this album. Now, I've been interested in the Flower Kings in a long time, and I must say that this album is kind of a let down to their previous albums. After you get past the risque cover art, and finally put the album in the player, you are whisked into another world.

The opening track, the first Suite on the album Love Supreme, sounds a little too poppy for my taste, but I really got into it. Roine Stolt is a very good guitarist, weaving together great melody and solos into the tight mix. I should also give credit to the other members of the band, they all did a good job on the album (Although I didn't really like Gildenlow, it's listenable). Other stand out tracks include the heavy-metal Adam and Eve, with heavy guitars and raunchy vocals, Driver's Seat, the second suite, and The Blade of Cain.

The downfall to this album comes in two forms, lyrics that are sub-par, and partly on Daniel Gildenlow. I can tolerate his stuff with Pain of Salvation, but he doesn't really fit with the Flower Kings. The lyrics are all around too poppy, and some songs could have used a lot of lyrical refinement.

Overall, it is an okay album. It's not one I'd recommend to someone who wants to get into the Flower Kings, but it was a sufficient effort. Let's hope the next one will be better.

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Send comments to Cygnus X-2 (BETA) | Report this review (#32006)
Posted Monday, May 02, 2005 | Review Permalink
sj_digriz@msn
2 stars I find this almost unlistenable. The lyrics are sooo bad and the songs just seem to be "assembled". I've listened to it all the way through 2 times completely and made another few attempts, but I just can't suggest this unless you are a big FK fan. Don't start here or it will put you off exploring some of the good things FK did before.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#32007)
Posted Monday, May 02, 2005 | Review Permalink
lor68
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Oh my god what's all the fuss about it?!?!Well , except on a few circumstances during the development of their style,where they found their own way (especially regarding of their personal tunes such as "The Melting Pot" inside "Retropolis" for instance, or considering a few tracks of their debut album), in the last years the band of Roine Stolte has often composed some derivative concept albums like the present one, paying sometimes the tribute to Genesis and Yes. I think that their recent production, lacking of imagination and powerful creative music harmony, has affected the opinion of ther old fans about the future of the band!!Roine Stolte has lost his way to compose according to his remarkable talent, unfortunately by dissipating his energy and ideas within a lot of strange music projects (think of the recent stuff by Kaipa and Transatlantic,but also his participation to various tributes); and this is to me a disappointing situation, because since the issue of "The Rainmaker" their poor music ideas begin to emerge!! Talking about their good use of the digital guitar processor,as well as a few solos at the keyboards, there's not anything else to add...Steve Hackett performed the same style in the early seventies,without using such technology, but demonstrating another different cleverness in his music approach.Perhaps Roine Stolte is able to compose something closer to Frank Zappa, but the music improvisation inside the present album is weak and uninspiring ...that's my idea about the whole music project by Stolte and the recent F.K..

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Send comments to lor68 (BETA) | Report this review (#32008)
Posted Sunday, May 22, 2005 | Review Permalink
rws10923@yaho
4 stars This album was the first Flower Kings album that I ever owned. I'd read good reviews about the band in general, and when I looked in stores, the only thing I could find was one copy of "Adam & Eve", sitting there between some absolute crap bands like Fear Factory. It was only $14, so I thought, "Hey, I might as well." I now own four Flower Kings albums, and plan to get all the rest. This is the album that did it. No, it's not "their best work" or "their most progressive work", nor is it "their worst work" nor "their least progressive work". It's pretty much smack dab in the middle of quality for their albums, at least from what I've heard, which consists of this album, "Stardust We Are", "The Rainmaker", and "Retropolis". What I've noticed is that, in reviews for pretty much every album, people say either a)too much filler, b)not experimental enough/too pop-ish, or c)too experimental/aimless. Talk about hard to please. All I hear is "This is the best TFK album ever! I'm eagerly awaiting the next because it will be even better!" or "This is the worst TFK album ever! I'm never going to buy another of their albums because they'll all suck as badly as this one!"

Seriously, this album is very good. Even the "filler" or "pop" songs, as people tend to decry them as, are certainly progressive rock, and, in general, good songs. In fact, most of the time, when people say a song is filler, especially on, for instance, "Stardust We Are", it's because the song is not an independent entity from the other songs, or because it does not explicitly have to do with the previous or next song. All these so- called filler songs are often much-needed transitions between larger compositions, and, instead of making the larger composition longer so that it could trail off into an instrumental, they just separate the instrumental into a separate track. These really help the feel of the album, and I have never felt, ever, that any of them are unnecessary, though they do vary in actual quality. On "Adam & Eve", "Babylon" is just an instrumental extension of "Cosmic Circus", that breaks down at the end to a more sinister tone, where "Vampire's View" starts. Instead of thinking of "Cosmic Circus" as a pop song (mostly people say this because it's not long and experimental) and "Babylon" as a useless instrumental, I hear them and I think really of just one song that happens to be split into two tracks. "Vampire's View" and "Days Gone By" are the same way. They are really just one song, split for convenience or whatever. "Starlight Man", though it stands alone, is actually one of my favorite songs, which is weird, because I usually tend to like long, drawn-out stuff, whereas "Starlight Man" is concise and straightforward. But really, if you could take every pop song on the radio and compare it to "Starlight Man", in terms of lyrical meaning, melodic quality, and instrumental prowess, the Flower Kings blow everything out of the water. Everyone seems to be so obsessed with the song or album that they think is perfect that, whenever the band does something different, they think it's absolute crap. This is really a horrible way to listen to music. If you do it this way, you'll find your perfect album(s) and then refuse to listen to anything else.

That being said, "Adam & Eve" is a very, very strong album. It is also jam-packed with something that most people who don't listen to this kind of music assume that prog doesn't have: catchiness. The Flower Kings make irresistibly catchy music, no matter how weird or normal they are, they always manage to write melodies or lyrics that stick in your head. This album is really full of them. "Love Supreme" is almost a tribute to every progressive band of the past thirty years. You can hear Yes, Genesis, Marillion, King Crimson, Pink Floyd, Camel . . . everything's there. Tomas Bodin is a keyboard wizard. He really makes this track. If you hate it, which I actually sort of did at first, just listen to it again a couple of times. It grew on me very quickly. The other epic is probably one of my favorite songs of all time. "Driver's Seat" is dynamic synthesizer and guitar counterpoint at its best. Amazing melody and flowing themes, beautiful lyrics. It just keeps my attention the whole way, as it keeps progressing. And yet it's completely singable. Perfect.

I love "Cosmic Circus", mostly, once again, because of the keyboards in it. And the lyrics as well. They're awesome. "Babylon" is, as I said, a perfect transition between "Cosmic Circus" and "Vampire's View", but I see it as just part of "Cosmic Circus". "Vampire's View" is a love it or hate it track. I, personally, like it a lot, but I can understand where people might not. It's more of a monologue with music, or like a song from a musical (a really good musical) than a normal song, and yes, it does sometimes feel very campy, but what it does, it does very well. "Days Gone By" is a nice extension of "Vampire's View". Great waltz-type thing. It sounds very gothic and dark. The next track, "Adam & Eve", is another hit-or-miss thing. Either you love it or hate it. At first, I loved it. Then I hated it. Then I listened some more and found that I didn't mind the very unserious manner in which it is written and played, and now I like it again. Even if you think it's overly silly for whatever reason (and sometimes I feel the same way), it still contains some of the most awesome bass and drum work I've heard in a long time. Jonas Reingold is amazing in that he can go from jazzy walking to John Myung- and Geddy Lee-eque runs and riffs with what seems to be no effort, and then drop down into a basic rock groove afterwards. My opinion on this song really varies, though, with every listen.

I already talked about "Starlight Man". "Timelines" is one of those songs that is impossible to hate. At least, so far, I've not known a single person who dislikes it, even though it is easily longer than today's radio fare. All of my friends, prog-fans or not, enjoy it, as does my 16-year-old sister who listens mostly to emo, and my mother, who is a Cat Stevens and Simon & Garfunkel kind of person. The movement from frantic, complete instrumental freak-out to smoky, jazzy acoustic guitar is so appropriate, for some reason. The lyrics, once again, are awesome. Very insightful and eloquent. And they've got a sense of humor too ("Like in a big, bold American style . . ."). I already talked about "Driver's Seat". "Blade of Cain" is the final track, and, from the other Flower Kings stuff that I've listened to, it has the most in common with stuff on "The Rainmaker", though it's probably better than half of that album. It's got a kind of weird, spacey, sinister feel to it. Great for finishing up an album that starts with a song that can only be described as ultra-positive. It basically symbolizes the inevitable downfall of what was presented in the first few tracks.

All in all, the album has its masterpiece moments and its "Well . . . I dunno . . ." moments, but it works together marvelously, and incorporates almost flawlessly a broad range of styles. From what other people have said, this album isn't as adventurous as, say, "Unfold the Future", which I have yet to listen to, but that hardly justifies slamming it. It's a beautiful, viable work of music, and definitely worth owning. 4.5/5.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#32009)
Posted Monday, May 30, 2005 | Review Permalink
2 stars Unlike most FK albums, this one is actually listenable, partly because it's not nearly as AOR/Rock-oriented as their previous work, but instead mines some less predictable melodic avenues, but also because Roine Stolt doesn't handle the main vocals.

Not that Hasse Fröberg is all that great either, the way he keeps straining his voice continuously, but at least you don't get that forced Stolt vibrato and ridiculous English pronunciation; although that does feature in quite a few spots with odd things like "dance" being pronounced "danze" for no good reason. This is weird especially since the "z" sound in English is not at all a Swedish sound and Swedes tend to *not* use it at all in English, so stuffing it in where it doesn't belong is completely counterintuitive. Surely someone should be able to coach Roine on this quite simple point?

And now there's a third vocalist, yet another strained singer. It seems that this is something that the FK camp likes a lot, which is strange, because most of the hallmark singers of old-school Prog are very natural-voiced and relaxed (with 70's-era Geddy Lee being a marked exception). It's sad, because with a good vocalist that could pronounce English and write lyrics that aren't quite so silly, FK could be quite a good band instead of producing near-miss after near-miss.

As they stand now, they're good instrumentalists and composers, but that just doesn't add up to a complete package.

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Send comments to Teaflax (BETA) | Report this review (#37709)
Posted Sunday, June 26, 2005 | Review Permalink
5 stars It's unfortunate how underrated TFK really are. Ever since I laid ears on this band I've loved them. Their music always consists of a unique blend of beautiful melodies and complex structures, and this album is no exception. It is a work that has been criticized quite heavily by some TFK fans, and upon my first experience with a few samples from this cd, I might have agreed with some of their criticisms. It took me a little while to fully understand and appreciate the masterful work here. A & E is filled with some of the most creative and unique song writing in modern prog. An awsome mix crunchy and pretty guitars, and you can't ask for a more solid rythm section. Give this one a little time and some attentive listening and you will see it for what it is; a true original masterpiece!

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Send comments to Siddartha (BETA) | Report this review (#38279)
Posted Saturday, July 02, 2005 | Review Permalink
5 stars With this disc THE FLOWER KINGS, it begins what apparently it is a change within the band, the participation constants of its members and the changes of the members and the influences of these in most outstanding which is the one of Daniel GILDENLÖW, member already of THE FLOWER KINGS, the different participation from the leader Roine STOLT, TRANSATLANTIC, KAIPA, KARMACANIK and THE TANGENT, and something peculiar is that in these more they have been praised in the projects that participate that with THE FLOWER KINGS. "Adam & Eve" are a work that could be considered of transition within the group, it is like a serpent that this on the verge of changing of their skin, in this work can observe great changes the majority due to their member new Daniel GILDENLÖW who contributes that sound very to his own style, this Swedish musician that pleases of the compositions of Roine STOLT and Takings BODIN, without a doubt a disc that continuous with the footpath marked by the fabulous "Unfold The Future", and equal of this a many they like and to many no, it contains two tracks releases "Love Supreme" and "Drivers Seat" , without a doubt first it very has a sound to the YES and GENTLE GIANT, without a doubt he is something that moved to some and will disappoint to others but I consider that this either structured, dosing the sounds, she sounds something Pop, but is something that music clears a little to him, as far as second am or look for an own sound the more unless somebody doubts it, but very sound or something similar to "Devil's Playground", that also is a search to obtain an own place, as far as those of but tracks are those that the more has changes, "Cosmic Circus", "Vampires View "," Adam & Eve "and" Timelines ", being the main songs with more evident changes with a sound more hard" Vampires View "interpreted by Daniel GILDENLÖW and" the Timelines ", for many most outstanding of the CD as far as contribution," Babylon "," Days Gone By "and" The Blade Of Cain ", the instrumental songs that already comprise of the instrumental style of THE FLOWER KINGS, appear to connect music, concept based on the oldest book of the world the Bible.

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Send comments to Shelket (BETA) | Report this review (#38520)
Posted Tuesday, July 05, 2005 | Review Permalink
dbeghetto@yah
5 stars A MASTERPIECE, WHITOUT ANY DOUBT!

I just cannot hear "Driver's Seat" if I'm not alone, able to pay attention to VERY part of this... "Love Supreme", "Cosmic Circus", "Babylon" and "Starlight Man" makes me feel like crying inside.

"Timelines" and "Adam and Eve" are two awesome songs also, that makes me breathe deeper, you know what I mean?

Really a wonderful album, I bought it whithout hear any song and I'm not disapointed AT ALL! ;¬)

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#41118)
Posted Sunday, July 31, 2005 | Review Permalink
Zitro
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars 3.7 stars

This is an underrated album, but still not one of the Flower Kings' best moments. Daniel Gildenlöw proves to be a very good vocalist here. This album is very different from Unfold The Future and Rainmaker. It sacrifices some of the jams and jazzy elements to create a tighter, more song oriented album.

Adam and Eve : 8/10 : begins the album, and it is one of the highlights of the album. It takes many listens to fully understand it, and at first listen, it may seem poppy. It is not poppy at all, just melodic. The themes are very memorable, and you may find yourself singing to them. The mood is very happy making this song very enjoyable to listen to. It sounds like the band misses the 70s, so this song sounds like a tribute to the 70s feel. The highlights for me in the song is on minute 6, when a strong Yes-like bass riff appears and is followed by a yes-like slide guitar that sounds really beautiful. The other highlight is its climax!!!

Cosmic Circus 9/10 : This is a very short pop song with a very strong melody, I love it.

3. Babylon 7/10 : This sounds like a short song from Stardust we are. It sounds beautiful and reminds me of late 70s Genesis.

4. A Vampires View 10/10 : The highlight of the album. This song is dominated by Daniel Gildenlow's haunting vocals. A vampire's view contains what I would say one of the best choruses I ever heard in Rock. The music reminds me of Peter Gabriel's most terrifying songs like 'prisoner' or 'darkness'. The second half is a great instrumental section followed by that unforgettable 'Im back' scream. This song does not sound like Flower Kings at all, but it is in my opinion one of their best songs. 5. Days Gone By : This is not a song, just part of Vampire's view. It contains diabolical laughs, and a moody piano.

6. Adam & Eve 5/10 : this track is a but uninspired. It contains good bass work and drumming. However, it recycles the 'I Am the Sun' riffs and has no memorable melodies or themes. The lyrics are kind of fun though.

7. Starlight Man 6/10 : A mainstream Flower King pop number. Not bad, though the chorus is a bit too sugary for me.

8. Timelines 7/10 : A very good song that shows influences of many 70s bands, especially King Crimson. The song Starts heavy and is interrupted by a Jack Johnson-like acoustic moment. The rest of the song is solid FK.

9. Drivers Seat 6/10 : The other epic of the album, It sounds more like their previous albums. The musicianship is good here, and there are plenty of guitar solos to enjoy, but they have done better epics as this one has some jamming that sounds like it was done to make this longer than it should and the vocal parts are very uninspired.

10. The Blade Of Cain 8.5/10 : Starting with great a keyboard riff, and masterful chord progressions, it is followed by one of Roine's mellowest and prettiest guitar solos he has ever played. It finally ends with some of Love Supreme's Themes restated.

If you are tired of neo-prog and want to hear prog that sounds like the 70s prog, this is for you. I recommend this album.

My grade : B-

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Send comments to Zitro (BETA) | Report this review (#41640)
Posted Thursday, August 04, 2005 | Review Permalink
ProgShine
COLLABORATOR
Errors & Omissions and Crossover Team
4 stars Adam & Eve, what to say about this Flower Kings record? Simply the best. Love Supreme begins and it turns me on, a great song in all the ways. A Vampire's View it's a Roger Waters way of interpretate the song it's amazing. An amzing album, a great surprise.

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Send comments to ProgShine (BETA) | Report this review (#43706)
Posted Sunday, August 21, 2005 | Review Permalink
Menswear
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Yawn.

The Flower Kings are really the kings...the kings of unexpected behavior. With such jamming potential and savoir-faire at hand, you could expect a hook here and there....barely.

The problem(s) with the FK is that they wander around, looking for a way to renew and explore (Unfold the Future) but on the good side, to keep a certain dose of entertainment (Space Revolver). Adam and Eve is giving you a lot of wandering and few moments of well- thought gelled material. This sounds like an attempt to reach for the good old times, but at the same time, you seem to assist to a long jam with (lame) songwriting.

Another deception from this band, not only on record, but also in concert. Their attempt to create ambience at the Capitole de Québec was blocked only by one thing: Adam and Eve material. The concert started to rise when they played I Am the Sun after a painful hour of their latest material. Once again, the lack interest in this record is showing.

This record couldn't simply retain my attention from the first listen to the 10th one. Roine Stolt is proving that perhaps giving it all away in so many projects is increasing the probability of an uninspired record.

This tastes nothing but re-heated sympho rock mixed with the same old FK optimistic sauce.

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Send comments to Menswear (BETA) | Report this review (#56145)
Posted Sunday, November 13, 2005 | Review Permalink
chessman
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars This, along with The Rainmaker, seems to be the album that divides the fans. Some love it, some hate it. Well, I left this one till the end to buy, and I have to say, I love it! This band just get better and better. 'Love Supreme' and 'Driver's Seat' are typical, classic FK tracks, very Yes influenced, with plenty of interesting instrumentation. Of course, what really does it is Stolt's Howe-like guitar work, and Froberg's Anderson-like vocals. Two excellent songs that stand along side anything the band has produced before. 'Cosmic Circus' has a ridiculously catchy whistling keyboard effect running throughout it, a nice melody and excellent singing, leading into 'Babylon', a superb Bodin composed instrumental. I love both of these. I suspect Bodin is very underrated as a player, he is actually very good and very professional. 'A Vampire's View' is another good track, with Gildenlow hamming it up in the best theatrical tradition. The story itself, about a vampire as told by that vampire, is well written - let's not forget that this band is not writing in its first language, something that should not be overlooked when the critics come calling. Lyrically the band is better than many English, or English speaking bands, eg: Yes. I love the chorus on this one too, again, very catchy. I have to say here that the production on this album is wonderful. Most FK albums are, but this one has a certain something that makes the whole package very good indeed. 'Days Gone By' is another supreme Bodin piece, which seamlessly follows on from 'Vampire' and shows Bodin's tremendous ability on the piano. It has, indeed, a feeling of days gone by. I could imagine this being played in Paris in the 19th century. The title track is another class piece, a little heavier but with the usual strong melody. Lyrically, I love this one too, being a modern take on, well, the Adam And Eve mythos. Another good chorus here. 'Starlight Man' is a shorter piece, with nice acoustic guitar, and Anderson style vocals from Hasse in the chorus. Roine sounds particularly good singing the verse here, this type of song obviously suits him. Again, it has a melody that will linger in the mind. 'Timelines' is quite a heavy piece again, though the chorus, as usual, is melodic. Could be my least favourite track here, but I do like it, and tomorrow it may be one of my faves! 'Driver's Seat' I have already mentioned, and the album concludes with 'The Blade Of Cain' a good guitar led instrumental, that ends with lines from 'Love Supreme' being reprised. Wonderful stuff! I have no hesitation in rating this album highly, and in fact, would say it is my third favourite FK album, only Flower Power and Unfold The Future edging it out. The cover, also, is superb, maybe my fave FK cover. All in all a wonderful album that will become, in years to come, a classic. If you are hesitating over getting it, don't. Get it now!

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Send comments to chessman (BETA) | Report this review (#70492)
Posted Saturday, February 25, 2006 | Review Permalink
3 stars This is your standard TFK album. You have two long epics, the best of them is Love Supreme, built around a simple but catchy chorus, with a return of classic 70's prog jamming, instead of the jazz-rock jamming predominant in the previous release. The other one, Drivers Seat features similar characteristics but I find some of the instrumental passages a little boring. Probably both tracks would be better if they had condensed then in 10 minutes each. There are also two pleasant short melodic songs, Cosmic Circus and Starlight Man, and a hard-rockin' one Adam & Eve, which sounds good but is directionless and not very inspired in my opinion. The highlight for me is undoubtly "A Vampire's View", with that histrionic and theatrical vocals and interesting music exploring new ideas never heard befor in a TFK album. That's it, a good average album, not outstanding but not disappointing at all.

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Send comments to eddietrooper (BETA) | Report this review (#77789)
Posted Wednesday, May 10, 2006 | Review Permalink
2 stars Adam & Eve seems to be a bit of a controversial issue among Flower King fans, so perhaps it was not the best place for me to start. Being told that if you like Yes, you'll dig The Flower Kings, I was incredibly disappointed with this album. The similarities to Yes aren't as blatant as one might think from word of mouth. The symphonic sound of many classic 70's bands is emulated for a rather safe listening experience. This would make for a great regressive album if not for the terrible poppy vocals. It's as if they laid down the music and then invited in Boston to do the vocals. They're all but intolerable with Daniel Gildenlow offering the only relief, but unfortunately he only serves a large role on two tracks, the best two on the album.

The two epics are really rather boring and nothing all too special. In between them we have two great tracks, and some filler. "Starlight Man" being the fillerist, yes I'm aware that's not a word. Its intro reminds me of Bad Company's "Shooting Star", and "Starlight Man" has about as much prog value as that song.

Take some interesting instrumental parts with horrible AOR vocals and you'll come out with this album. Boring at times, tolerable at others, and good for moments, maybe fans of the Flower Kings will enjoy this but it's obviously not for beginners.

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Send comments to Equality 7-2521 (BETA) | Report this review (#84032)
Posted Monday, July 17, 2006 | Review Permalink
infandous@exc
3 stars Well, I'm sad to say, they lost me here. I have been a fan of this band since 1999. In all that time and all those albums, this was the first real let down. Having said that, this is not a bad album as far as it goes. After living with it for a couple years now, I would say it has gone from 2 stars to 3 for me.

The opening "epic", Love Supreme still just seems a bit to repetitive and "samey" to me. It is more like a really long song than an epic. There is not necessarily a problem with that, as other bands have done this fairly successfully. But I don't care for the main melody, and it gets repeated so often that it makes it quite hard for me to really enjoy the song as a whole. I never thought I'd say this about a FK song, but it is just too long. Next is Cosmic Circus, a basically bland pop song. Not bad, but not particularly good either. The next track, Babylon is a great little Tomas Bodin instrumental that could easily have been longer. Great track with a very early Genesis feel (but not plagerism). Next is my favorite song on the album. For many fans of this album it seems to be their least favorite, but I love it. Great dramatic vocals from Gildenlow, whose voice and style fit this song perfectly, IMO. This song is a bit different from the rest of the album, being dark and menacing with a fantastic symphonic crescendo toward the end. Fantastic song all around. Days gone By is essentialy a piano solo coda to the previous song, and is just fine in that capacity. The title track is a decent, rocky song with some good vocals, but nothing particularly special. Not bad though. Starlight man is another nondescript pop song that might have been a hit in the late 80's or something. Well written, but bland. Timelines is an interesting, bluesy song bookended by two more frantic parts. I like this song a lot. Another highlight. Driver's Seat is the other "epic" on this ablum. It is better than the previous epic, but still seems lacking to me. I can't quite pinpoint it, and there are bits in it that I like a lot. But overall it is just good, and not particularly great. The final instrumental track is excellent, and ends the album really well. I've heard that live it is even better. A great track.

So with two epics that do little for me, and a handful of decent songs, this album is my least favorite FK album of them all. My instinct says to give it 2 stars, though I think it realistically rates around 2 1/2 stars. So I will round up, because I have been a fan so long, and because they will redeem themselves for me on the next album. But this is definetly their least interesting album as far as I am concerned.

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#92545)
Posted Friday, September 29, 2006 | Review Permalink
The T
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars After what was probably their greatest album to that date (Unfold the Future) and just before the release of arguably their best work (Paradox Hotel), The Flower Kings recorded what is, for me, their less successful effort. But, let's remember who we are talking about, so this isn't a bad album by any means; it's just that, when compared to the standards set by almost every other one of their opuses, this just isn't up to par.

Let's talk about the band members first: in Adam & Eve, the regular 5-man line-up (stolt, reingold, bodin, froberg and, at that time, Csorz) is enhanced by the contribution of vocals by Daniel Gildenlow from Pain of Salvation. Now, he already recorded a few songs with TFK for Unfold the Future, but in this album his presence leaves more of a mark than before, probably because now we are dealing only with a single cd album so he has, comparatively, more time and space to shine, whereas Unfold was a double album with many more songs, most of them performed in the vocals department by Stolt or Froberg (both of them, by the way, terrific singers). At first it could appear to be an odd mixture: TFK's symphonic, peace-and-love progrock with Gildenlow's introspective, obscure, violent metal. But, for a song at least, this coupling works and wonderfully at that; let's not forget Gildenlow is a truly talented singer, and a remarkable, even genius musician.

On with the songs:

Love Supreme, (9/10) a really classic TFK's song, much in the vein of Yes, with lots of beautiful melodies and a driving, coherent structure. A good track, if sometimes a little longer than needed.

Cosmic Circus, (8/10), well, yes, I know it's a little, simple, not pretentious track, but I just love it. The main melody/riff is so sparkling clear, so love-for-all-mankind that it makes the song a special one for me.

Babylon, (8/10) another small track (seems we have quite a few of these here, don't we), instrumental, not overly challenging but ultimately satisfying.

A Vampire's view (10/10), best song in the album, and the one that proves that the Gildenlow-FK pairing is not as odd as it may seem. What most amazes me is the complete harmony between the song's title and the music: it's full of somber, dark tones, it starts with Gildenlow singing (or more so, whispering) in such an obscure, dramatic voice that it really conveys the idea of a nosferatu singing form his own point of view. And the chorus, oh, one of those glorious Flower Kings choruses that is truly an exhaustion after the tension build in the verses, singed by Gildenlow at first in his most theatrical, suffering voice and then by the peaceful, soothing voice of Froberg. It's just a shame the chorus doesn't appear for a third time after the soloing but, hey, that would've made this one of TFK best songs ever, and that is not saying little. A truly remarkable piece...

Days gone By, (8/10) starts inmediatelly after the last track ended, this is really a tiny piano divertimento that is finished almost as soon as it begins...but even in its mere 1:10 minutes, it showcases the terrific art that Bodin possesses. In a way, a perfect ending for A Vampire's view...

Adam and Eve, (5/10) the album's lesser track, a boring, uninspired piece with no good melodies and no interesting details... it's a pity they chose to name the album after this mundane track...

Starlight Man, (8/10) another beautioful, peace-inducing song, which may not be the biggest display of technique or complex musicianship but at the same time produces such a smile for the listener after hearing it that it's difficult not to love.

My generation, (7/10), another dull song, a tad better than the title track but nothing to write home about.

Driver's seat (5/10), the other low point in this record, it's actually difficult for me to accept that I'm saying that about an 18+ minute FK epic, but it's true. Not even close to epics like Stardust we Are, The Truth will set you free or even this same album's first track, this song lacks variety, good melodies, but what it lacks the most is A CUT. Yes, I can hear a 30 minute track by this same band with no problems, but I just fall asleep during this 18 minute compendium of notes with no sense. This song is so unispired, it pales in comparison even to other bands efforts. A poor, poor effort.

The Blade of Cain, (7/10), the album's closer is not a bad track, an instrumental piece with some moments of light, but the problem is, after the last song, probably no one can bear to hear this, or better said, probably every one is sleeping.

So, as you can see, this album starts on the right track, and when it looks like reaching the same superior level as almost every other TFK opus, it crumbles horribly and fallas apart. The fact that Stolt doens't sing as much as in other albums and that most of the tracks are very short add to the impression that this was not the Swede master's best hour of inspiration. But, hey!, this band is so great it's still a pretty listenable collection of songs, and the best part....the Swedes got back in their game after this slip and gave us their best work, Paradox Hotel.

So take this as a bridge linking two masterpieces. But a bridge with a weak structure, one you better drive through at medium speed, or you could fall in the river of dissapointment.

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Send comments to The T (BETA) | Report this review (#94874)
Posted Tuesday, October 17, 2006 | Review Permalink
Tarcisio Moura
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars It took me a lot of time to figure out why Adam & Eve is my least favorite Flower King album. Even Rainmaker, with all its faults, seem to be more atractive to me than this one. Most of my friends who dig FK music think the same, but they also can't really explain it. So I put the album aside for some time and now I heard it all again to have a better view. What puzzled me is the fact that there are really many songs here that I really like and think they are par to FK's better work.

Love Supreme and Drivers Seat, for instance, are fine epics. Starlight man ios one great tune. The problem, I now understand, is the inclusion of the three songs that spoils the overall harmony of the entire album: Vampire View, Days gone By, Adam & Eve. The first is probably FK's worst song ever. Many reviewrs here say it is a humurous joke. A Joke? Maybe, but not a funny one and too long for its own good. It would be ok if it was just a filler on one of the band's double CDs, it would be a forgotten tune lost among many other tracks. Days Gone By sounds like a sequel to the same tune and goes to Adam & EWve, another song that is not one of their best offerings. These three tracks bresk down the album continuity and, being in the very middle of the CD, seem to divide it in two. So if you want to hear the best of it, you'll have to skip those.

Now I can say I like Adam & Eve. After alll, the three bad ones represent just 18 minutes in a 70+ CD. So the best stuff is a majority here. It's only a pity it took me solong to find out what was wrong with it. They should be more careful with the tracks sequence. Aside from that a good, if not essential, album.

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Send comments to Tarcisio Moura (BETA) | Report this review (#99092)
Posted Thursday, November 16, 2006 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars If you have been through some of my earlier TFK reviews, you know that at times this band can really enjoy me (but at the same time being irritating for my ears as well).

When I listen to the opener, I can only be charmed. This is one of my fave TFK track ever. On par with (chronologically) "World of Adventures" and "Big Puzzle" from their debut album, "There is More to This World" from "Retropolis", "In the Eyes of the World" and "Church of Your Heart" from "Stardust" and "The Truth Will Set You Free" from "Unfold The Future".

"Love Supreme" is extremely melodic, enormously emotional and brilliantly interpreted (both vocal and instrumental parts). It is the absolute highlight of this album. When TFK plays at this level, I am really impressed. Even if such a song is of course fully remininscent of Yes during their glory days. But as I have said while talking about "The Truth...", Yes doesn't write these type of songs any longer and I am very pleased that a band like TFK is there to remind me my teenager days (like IQ did with "Harvest Of Souls"). This is really a wonderful track.

After such a masterpiece, it is of course difficult to write about the other songs. "Cosmic Circus" is a very nice little piece of music. Simple, quiet, very accessible while the instrumental "Babylon" is also pleasant.

The second long song ("Vampire's View") reminds me Floyd (Gilmour period), especially during the chorus. The finale being more in the Crimson vein : tortured, scary (which is normal with such a title), noisy and almost experimental. This is another very interesting track, I should say.

A short piano break "Days Gone By" to get rid of our fear and here we go for the title track. "Adam & Eve" is on the heavy side of TFK repertoire. Funny lyrics about how our ancestors (at least if you believe in this story...).

"Adam was handsome but somewhat bizarre, he looked at himslef like some kind of pornstar. Eve was confused, but did she shine on, boy! She made him fly high until the urge was gone".

This song is again very much Yes oriented, but this aspect of TFK has always pleased me, so...The good moments are prolonged with "Starlight Man". A simple and delicate song like... "Wonderous Stories". Vocals are fully Anderson oriented. I understand that the similarity might be irritating.

"Timelines" is somewhat more difficult to approach. The Crimson influence reached it and is mixed with superb vocal harmonies. Another good song though. Well, actually there is no weak track so far.

Things get a little more complicated with the second longest song of this album (over eighteen minutes). Truely complex and a bit noisy at times. Just give it a few spin and you will be able to discover that it holds some good moments as well. It is my least favourite track of this album. A bit too long to be fully interesting (especially the middle part).

The closing "Blade Of Cain" is a powerful piece of music which features all the grandeur of the FK great musicianship (during the first half at least). A very pleasant way to close this very good album. In my top five of TFK ones, no doubt.

For nostalgic persons as I am, Yes (through this album) and Genesis (through "Dark Matter") were kind of a ressurected in 2004. Don't get me wrong. These albums were of course derivative work from these giants I love so much (some even call this re- gressive but I hate this word even if I have used once).

Four stars.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#131654)
Posted Saturday, August 04, 2007 | Review Permalink
progrules
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars In the Progarchives forum I discovered a topic about TFK in which the best album was asked for. Interesting question because they never made a real bad album and hardly ever a perfect masterpiece. So I had to think about that for a while. But one of the questions asked in the topic was why this album (Adam & Eve) had no votes. Quite some contenders answered that question and so did I. My answer was (like most) that this album contains two masterpiece epics and that's all, at least where the really positive comments are concerned. The other songs are hardly worthwhile, just Timelines and The Blade of Cain are ok. The other tracks are really too poor for TFK standard.

What about the epics ? Well there is hardly anything better to be found in their entire history than these two songs. I said it often in the other TFK reviews, they are so good in the epical department. And they once again prove it with these two. Great symphonic compositions I listened two innumerable times and it never bores.

So that's a huge distinction between the positive and the negative aspects of the album. In no other album they made was it this big. But still I would recommend it to TFK fans because the two epics belong in your collection ! 4 stars because of that but it's actually 3.5.

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Send comments to progrules (BETA) | Report this review (#151047)
Posted Friday, November 16, 2007 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars 3.5 stars. In the liner notes Roine says "A special gratitude goes to Joni Mitchell and her masterpiece "Travelogue" that inspired me tremendously during late sleepless morning hours during this recording, no music has touched me so profoundly in 30 years!!! ". There is also a picture in the liner notes of the ocean with the words "We are stardust, we are golden and we got to get ourselves back to garden Joni Mitchell 1969" on it. Hasse is given a greater role vocally on this one and Daniel Gildenlow who debut on "Unfold The Future" is also given a greater vocal role singing lead on two tracks.This is an album that for me is easy to like. It's accessible with lots of mellotron and organ. And tszirmay's favourite bass player is huge on this one. I mean he's all over it with major deep bass grooves. Certainly this is far, far less jazzy than their previous one but they also throw some curves with "A Vampires View" and "Adam & Eve" both of which I find difficult to get into. So a mixed bag here.

"Love Supreme" has a unique sounding intro before Jonas delivers some heavy bass lines the rest of the way. Cool sounding guitar 4 minutes in followed by mellotron. A nice uplifting section 7 minutes in and the drum / guitar section 9 minutes in is outstanding. Roine sings after 12 minutes and then delivers some soaring and scorching guitar melodies after 16 minues. Fantastic tune ! "Cosmic Circus" is about uplifting as a FLOWER KING song can get. The bass and drums simply shine. The mellotron is a nice touch. "Babylon" is a GENESIS-flavoured instrumental thanks mainly to Bodin. The synths, mellotron and Roine's Hackett inspired opening guitar is priceless. One of my favourite tracks. "A Vampires View" features Gildenow on vocals and he gets quite theatrical on this one. Almost speaking the words. A full sound arrives 2 minutes in as Daniel sings bringing PAIN OF SALVATION to mind right away. The contrast continues. It gets nice and heavy after 7 minutes as organ and drums dominate as the bass throbs. "Days Gone By" is a very short piano driven tune with an outburst of crazy vocals. "Adam & Eve" again features Gildenow on vocals. This is the heaviest song on here. It opens with mellotron and piano before it becomes bombastic quickly including heavy slabs of bass. The vocals are great. Scorching guitar comes and goes. Organ before 3 minutes as an incredible instrumental section follows. Amazing passage that ends with a calm. A great finish to this one as well.

"Starlight Man" features Roine on vocals and it opens with guitar as light drums and bass lead the way. "Timelines" is another favourite of mine. It opens much like an ANEKDOTEN song with plenty of bass and drums. Very aggressive before it settles down a minute in when the vocals and strummed guitar arrive. The mellotron is very ANEKDOTEN-like as well and it sounds awesome. It comes and goes. A nice long, relaxing instrumental section ends 5 minutes in as vocals return. It takes off again 6 1/2 minutes in. "Drivers Seat" is classic FLOWER KINGS. A feel good track that lasts almost 19 minutes. I love the bass as the guitar plays on. Vocals 2 1/2 minutes in. It then gets jazzy before some sizzling guitar takes the spotlight. Roine's on voclas 6 minutes in. Odd-metered drumming and some ripping guitar after 8 minutes that goes on and on. Nice. The song stops 11 minutes in and then rebuilds to a full sound 12 1/2 minutes in. A wondrous section 2 minutes later followed a minute after that by the guitar / bass melody from earlier. What a ride ! "The Blade Of Cain" might be my favourite song of all. It has this uplifting, heavenly sound that is quite spacey. The guitar that follows is so beautiful. The waves of sound really bring IONA to mind. I just get lost in this wonderful track. Words are sung and shouted with emotion and passion late, like "love supreme the master's hand and love !" The perfect way to end this very inspiring album.

A better album than it's given credit for but not quite 4 stars. The two big negatives are "A Vampires View" and the length of this album at over 79 minutes.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#165217)
Posted Friday, March 28, 2008 | Review Permalink
3 stars Well, this is not 'The Flower Kings' best album, but it's still an enjoyable listen. The album starts off with the best track on the record 'Love Supreme'. It has the Flower Kings 'happy mood' feel to it which can lift one up after a long day. It's a longer song which we've come to expect from them, and they perform rather well. Good buildups, colourful lyrics, and great resolutions after their buildups. I love how at one point the vocals don't match the music, to which the music switches to match the vocals. It makes the music more enjoyable to listen to after the mismatch.

But what happens after 'Love Supreme'? 'Cosmic Circus' jumps me each time it starts after 'Love Supreme's mellow ending. This was not the best song to follow up the epic beginnings. Other then that, a typical 'Flower Kings' song, and Babylon is a nice follow up using the same melody from the Cosmic Circus.

"A Vampire's View" is the only other stand out song on the album, only from its uniqueness from all other Flower Kings songs I've heard. It's mellow, sadistic, creepy and is the theme song to those who slink around downtown at 2AM in a dark alleyway [EDITORS NOTE: Do not slink around downtown at 2AM in a dark alleyway listening to this song]. "Day's Gone By" is the 'Babylon' for 'A Vampire's View'; a very creepy waltz just on a piano.

I'm not a fan of the titled track; it just doesn't do much for me. It's a nice track and all, it just doesn't offer anything more then a 'Flower Kings' typical song. "Starligh Man" is another forgettable song, although I do enjoy the 'happy' feel it brings. "Timelines" does the same thing. Although it rocks a bit harder and is a bit longer, after listening to the album as a whole, it gets lost.

"Driver's Seat" the album's second big song starts off well enough, so well that when the song get over the small introduction, it loses all momentum it had and falls. When I first listened to the album, I thought that the song stopped halfway through and was ready to turn it off. Not the best thing for a song. Like the rest of the album after the first song, 'Driver's Seat' doesn't do much for me in terms of an epic 18+ minuet song. On the plus side, it does provide for a nice soothing song, and the end turns it around giving the listener a nice treat of music. The song has a 'space aged wonky' sound every once in a while that I enjoy.

The album finishes with a small instrumental peace which winds down the album; nothing much more then that. The album is enjoyable, but it's not very memorable besides the first and fourth song.

A solid three stars, one for Adam, one for Eve and one for the love the two share.

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Send comments to mothershabooboo (BETA) | Report this review (#172545)
Posted Thursday, May 29, 2008 | Review Permalink
2 stars Not a big fan of the cover or title for this, but who cares.

FK's single disc albums tend to be more coherent and focused but also tend to be less adventurous. No surprise there, and not too many surprises here (for a FK fan that is). Unfold the future was for mine a bit too directionless and had too much filler.

This album doesn't really have a bad note on it, but it does lack that certain something that keeps me coming back for repeated listens. Where this album disappoints is in the lack of 'cut loose' technical jam sections, urgency/aggression and experimentation. The emphasis is more on songs, which may mean it is a good point to discover the band, but not if you're a Dream Theater fan. The gripe I ever have with FK is their tendency to sound a bit 'adult contemporary' or 'christian rock' at times, but hey, if they throw in a bit more grunt and experimentation I can live with it.

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Send comments to praj912 (BETA) | Report this review (#173891)
Posted Saturday, June 14, 2008 | Review Permalink
CCVP
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars A good album, but if it was 10 or 20 minutes shorter it would be much better

It is always hard to make a decent follow up album after an amazing album, and with the Flower Kings the story was not different. After the incredible masterpiece that was Unfold the Future, Roine Stolt and associates decided to once again join forces with Daniel Gildenlöw in order to come up with another album as good as Unfold the Future was.

However, the final results in Adam & Eve were not as satisfying as they were in their previous album and that is because this album feels way too long. Well, its true that their last album with Gildenlöw was almost twice as long as Adam & Eve, but then every song was good and the album flowed much better than this one. Also, there are lots of parts in many songs here that, in my opinion, are unnecessary and sound like they are fillers. That can be clearly seen in the songs Adam & Eve and Drivers Seat and if those songs and some others were shorten, the album would flow and sound much better. Another thing that shows that the album should be shorten somehow is that the album, halfway to the end, seemingly gets uninspired and the songs start sounding rather generic.

Also in Adam & Eve, the album, Gildenlöw sings much more than in Unfold the Future and, instead of just singing backing vocals or just some small sessions of some songs, he sings the main vocals in a bunch of songs, like Vampires View, Adam & Eve, but that is as far as his influence goes, because this album sounds exactly like a Flower Kings album.

The highlights go to Love Supreme, Cosmic Circus & Babylon, Vampires View & Days Gone By and the first 11 minutes of Drivers Seat.

Grade and Final Thoughts

This album is a very good one, but just like some other Flower kings albums, it is way too long. If this album was a bit smaller, it could have been much better and, for that, i believe it deserves the 3 stars grade

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Send comments to CCVP (BETA) | Report this review (#186547)
Posted Monday, October 20, 2008 | Review Permalink
The Quiet One
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars ''Roine was handsome, but somewhat bizzare, he looked at himself like some kind of progstar''

After the amazing Unfold the Future, which followed the same eclectic style since 2000 with Space Revolver, The Flower Kings with Adam & Eve return to the more straight-forward Symphonic Prog, like they did in their early days, without the jazzy leanings from Ulf's sax and Jonas' fretless bass which was characteristic from their classic albums like the already mentinoed Space Revolver and Unfold the Future.

Obviously this was a great dissapointment for TFK fans waiting something better or at least in the same style of Unfold the Future. I luckily, didn't know Unfold the Future before I knew this one, or at least didn't want something similar to Space Revolver which I had before.

This album as Space Revolver, contains 10 songs, which make the album with more chances of being consistent like Space Revolver was/is. Fortunately this album is also consistent, one of the things I love so much about this album, as well as Space Revolver. Don't get me wrong, Space Revolver, despite the consistency similarity, is barely similar to Adam & Eve. Now to the songs:

The album opens up with the typical epic opener, Love Supreme.(Just in case, this has nothing to do with Love Supreme by John Coltrane, nor the version of McLaughlin and Santana). Love Supreme does have some similarity to The Truth Will Set You Free because of the percussion intro and some melodies, but like I said earlier, the jazzy influences making so characteristic that epic, isn't here. Love Supreme has overall a very acoustic feel almost all throughout the song, with, like always, a excellent composition and musicianship. To say the least, a very smooth, yet highly entertaining epic, and of course, a grandiose opener, which sets the whole mood the album will follow.

The album follows the acoustic mood with Cosmic Circus, a melodic soft tune that flows perfectly with the previous big epic, just like Dream on Dreamer does with I Am The Sun Part 1.

Follows up a short but great symphonic instrumental called Babylon, with some nice moog and a very cheerful melody.

Obviously Roine Stolt knows how to ''build'' a album, not letting a certain mood dominate the album, so Roine & Co. delivers the haunting and powerful, A Vampires View with Daniel Gildenlöw from Pain of Salvation, on lead vocals suiting very well the haunting mood. As very well others said before me, it's a quite unique tune for The Flower Kings' catalogue, not the best tune on the album, however unique.

To follow the haunting mood Roine puts on a typical instrumental-passage of the same kind, lead by a dramatic piano, called Days Gone By, which will open the next haunting and powerful tune which is the title tracl. Adam & Eve(the song) features a very similar metal-esque riff to I Am The Sun Part 1, though by no means this song follows the same symphonic path I Am The Sun does. Still Adam & Eve stands alone as a killer Heavy Progger, with great guitar and moog solos, making a great enjoyable tune. Also this song is the last of the 'haunting' or at least dark trilogy, started by A Vampires View.

After 3 sombre and powerful tunes, Roine delivers another up-lifting sophisticated pop tune ala Cosmic Circus called Starlight Man, with the acoustic feel again. I find it highly enjoyable every now and then, with a great bass playing and a decent guitar solo to keep my attention, as well as the catchy up-lifting melody.

Roine moves on to Prog territory once again with Timelines, which starts powerfully and somewhat dissonant. Which then moves brilliantly to a soft piece lead by the acoustic guitar, extremely catchy and by no means pop. For what the song lasts, I have to say that the song develops gently and brilliant, with some mellotron here and there, some Fripp guitar-cliches, also some very bluesy organ followed by a great guitar solo, in which the song will end up fierceful as the begining. Definitely my favorite track of the album, and one of the bests from here as well.

As you may notice, this album is missing quite the Symphonic epicness as they used to have in their first albums. Well Driver's Seat gives you 18 minutes of it. With a tremendous vast of mood changes, which pittily some don't flow well, but overall it's stunning, with classic symphonic moog, Squire-alike bass playing, and once again excellent guitar.

To end the album, they wrote The Blade of Cain, a excellent instrumental, with a lot of energy emitted by the powerful melodies created by the organ and guitar. However the song finishes acoustic, and finally ending with the sound of wind.

Adam & Eve is definitely a odd album for The Flower Kings, since it shows The Flower Kings' darkest attempts as well as softest, which in the following, Paradox Hotel, these will be neutralised, not heading to too haunty-esque nor too soft.

Adam & Eve has, IMO, the same amount of great material as Space Revolver, so if you're looking for a consistent album like Space Revolver, this is one of them. Of course, the great material from Space Revolver definitely beats the great material from here, but nonethless this album is excellent.

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Send comments to The Quiet One (BETA) | Report this review (#203702)
Posted Thursday, February 19, 2009 | Review Permalink
3 stars Well, I'm sad to say, they lost me here. I have been a fan of this band since 1999. In all that time and all those albums, this was the first real let down. Having said that, this is not a bad album as far as it goes. After living with it for a couple years now, I would say it has gone from 2 stars to 3 for me.

The opening "epic", Love Supreme still just seems a bit to repetitive and "samey" to me. It is more like a really long song than an epic. There is not necessarily a problem with that, as other bands have done this fairly successfully. But I don't care for the main melody, and it gets repeated so often that it makes it quite hard for me to really enjoy the song as a whole. I never thought I'd say this about a FK song, but it is just too long. Next is Cosmic Circus, a basically bland pop song. Not bad, but not particularly good either. The next track, Babylon is a great little Tomas Bodin instrumental that could easily have been longer. Great track with a very early Genesis feel (but not plagiarism). Next is my favorite song on the album. For many fans of this album it seems to be their least favorite, but I love it. Great dramatic vocals from Gildenlow, whose voice and style fit this song perfectly, IMO. This song is a bit different from the rest of the album, being dark and menacing with a fantastic symphonic crescendo toward the end. Fantastic song all around. Days gone By is essentially a piano solo coda to the previous song, and is just fine in that capacity. The title track is a decent, rocky song with some good vocals, but nothing particularly special. Not bad though. Starlight man is another nondescript pop song that might have been a hit in the late 80's or something. Well written, but bland. Timelines is an interesting, bluesy song bookended by two more frantic parts. I like this song a lot. Another highlight. Driver's Seat is the other "epic" on this album. It is better than the previous epic, but still seems lacking to me. I can't quite pinpoint it, and there are bits in it that I like a lot. But overall it is just good, and not particularly great. The final instrumental track is excellent, and ends the album really well. I've heard that live it is even better. A great track.

So with two epics that do little for me, and a handful of decent songs, this album is my least favorite FK album of them all. My instinct says to give it 2 stars, though I think it realistically rates around 2 1/2 stars. So I will round up, because I have been a fan so long, and because they will redeem themselves for me on the next album. But this is definitely their least interesting album as far as I am concerned.

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Send comments to infandous (BETA) | Report this review (#215187)
Posted Tuesday, May 12, 2009 | Review Permalink
Epignosis
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Eclectic Prog Team
4 stars Another admirable album from The Flower Kings, although again I must say it has several weaker moments, Adam & Eve can be initially difficult to get through, as I feel is the case with all of their albums. The initial lengthy track is the greatest on here (and one of the band's best), and afterwards there's much to look forward to.

"Love Supreme" This nearly twenty minute piece is the crowning achievement of the album. The guitar and synthesizer parts blend seamlessly, and the vocals are phenomenal, mainly over a 9/4 time signature. Midway through, the song adopts a sinister feel, adapting the main vocal theme over minor chords. The music drops off to bring in a country-like bit with slide and acoustic guitar, and Roine Stolt delivering one of his best vocal performances. All in all, this is one of The Flower Kings best songs; it's an inexplicably uplifting and dense atmosphere of sounds that somehow manages to stay light.

"Cosmic Circus" Despite the laughable title, this is an excellent short song, with whistling synthesizer and a very memorable melody.

"Babylon" One of my favorite short instrumentals of all time, Tomas Bodin stands out once more as a brilliant keyboardist, providing washes of Mellotron and a grand synthesizer lead.

"A Vampire's View" I doubt I'll ever like this one. It's grimly theatric, which makes it sounds a bit ludicrous. The music doesn't flow very well (it's all a bit random), and the guest vocalist (from Pain of Salvation) would have been a great addition had he not been so dramatic. On the other hand, Bodin's organ work is quite good.

"Adam & Eve" The title track begins with gorgeous Mellotron and synthesizer from Bodin, but it explodes into what is the heaviest song on the album. The instrumentalists do a great job throughout, even if the singing and lyrics do very little for me. Jonas Reingold lets it rip on a killer bass solo that just has to be heard.

"Starlight Man" Stolt's grandfatherly voice sings this gentle song over acoustic guitar and great bass courtesy of Reingold.

"Timelines" This one has a menacing introduction with a lot of wild sounds thrown in. Soon it's just Stolt and an acoustic guitar again. It's largely a forgettable song because it's so hard to follow.

"Driver's Seat" The second epic begins gallantly enough, with a great opening theme and loud Mellotron. It's not quite as strong as the amazing first track, but it's still good, full of interesting bits and some tight transitions. There's a complete cutoff in the middle that gives way to more music, something I've rarely appreciated. Some may appreciate it more, however.

"The Blade of Cain" The final track consists of lovely organ notes plunking in the backdrop, as stellar electric guitar and fretless bass work alongside each other. Over atmospheric sections, the words of "Love Supreme" are revisited, making this a most excellent way to end a most excellent album.

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Send comments to Epignosis (BETA) | Report this review (#219011)
Posted Saturday, May 30, 2009 | Review Permalink
3 stars 80 minutes of.. uninspired music?

I'm not too sure about whats wrong with this album, but it just wont grow on me. I have it in my collection for a good 2 years now and I'm still not too fond of it. The 2 epics are pretty ok, they're not their best, but they aren't bad either. Love Supreme might contain too much of the "same stuff" but all in all it's pretty solid. A Vampires View isn't all that, gildenlow delivers some good vocals, but the song is much of the same and a bit long stretched. Adam and Eve has some of the most humorous lyrics in the scene. Cosmic circus is too poppy for my taste. In fact, it could be released as a radio single. It's a bit too accesible.

Don't get me wrong, this album is ok. But imo TFK has more potential

Near to 3 stars

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Send comments to Anesthetize (BETA) | Report this review (#226812)
Posted Wednesday, July 15, 2009 | Review Permalink
3 stars So beautiful, so full of promises and so full of details.......... but still a failure; The Flower Kings has spawned a Jessica Simpson.

The music is the normal The Flower Kings staple diet here. Without any killer tracks this time, that is. The front is beautiful with the art-work, the smorgasboard full of details and a very good sound. But when I have listened to it ten times; I still not get it. There is very little there which I remember. Just some good licks and a lot of good melodies....... fragmented all over the place. I believe this is a concept album about the Biblical persons Adam & Eve. The music is more symphonic than on most other The Flower Kings albums. But it still does not kicks like the debut album does. Simply; where are the great melodies ? They are not here. Being a The Flower Kings album; this is an artistic failure. But it is still not a bad album. I still enjoy it now and then. But a classic, it ain't.

3 stars

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Send comments to toroddfuglesteg (BETA) | Report this review (#227633)
Posted Monday, July 20, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars This is going to get FOUR STARS, 4.3 rounded down. I have given this four or five spins and the stand out track is number 9 - "Drivers seat" and this track takes this CD past the three stars mark. This is a long tack perhaps just short of EPIC length, but it has some really nice instrumental passages. Roine showcases some of his best guitar work (on this CD apart from the last track) and the start and finale are excellent Symphonic prog. The rest of the CD? Well , The last track is also excellent - an instrumental with excellent nee GENIUS work from Stolte. I also like Adam & Eve with it's solid rock base and excellent guitar solo. A Vampires view has me liking it because it's sort of gothic darkness, this song is preceded by two excellent short tracks - Babylon - I love it - sort of Hackett but I can't help being remined of a bit of an Abba tune (it's amazing what Memes get in your head). The Epic Love Supreme isn't bad and has a really good finale with an amazing guitar solo - but overall its one of the Flokis weakest epics.

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Send comments to M27Barney (BETA) | Report this review (#229271)
Posted Friday, July 31, 2009 | Review Permalink
5 stars 4.7/5

When I review albums, I usually compare a band's work with their other stuff, as I'm sure others do. I don't quite understand how this album is rated as one of their lowest. I see this album as their last excellent piece of work. (Superior to Paradox Hotel and The Sum of No Evil)

Adam and Eve has everything I love about this band- great melodies, vocals, and musicianship. There are no slow, tedious moments on this album, and its diversity and range works perfectly. Every band has its weaknesses, and I would say that TFK's tend to drag a bit here and there, trying to fill the max capacity of a single disc (and sometimes 2) But Adam and Eve does not do this at all- it's length is satisfying and tasteful. If you are new to this band, I recommend you start with Space Revolver, and then move onto Adam and Eve or Unfold the Future.

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Send comments to Drew (BETA) | Report this review (#259150)
Posted Sunday, January 03, 2010 | Review Permalink
Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Errors and Omissions Team
4 stars I've just lost lenghty review here due to log problems I've surprisingly had these minutes. So shortly: This is typical TFK album, so it means that they're maintaining their quality which means that they will be for most of people right under 4 stars (as most of their albums). Long album that fits right into

4(-) category, as good one, but not full of exceptional pieces (most of their albums aren't that way), but offers good deal of interesting songs, two of epic proportions, jazz fillings into empty spaces and overall quite good mood that shines from this album. Nice cover art and I was fortunate enough to get bonus disc that offers another experience in similar tone/ style, again, nothing that steps out of row. However, TFK are able to do this on every album they release, so it's more like surprise that they're so good-above god for so long.

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Send comments to Marty McFly (BETA) | Report this review (#259439)
Posted Tuesday, January 05, 2010 | Review Permalink
Rune2000
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Metal Team
3 stars I remember borrowing this album from a friend just a month after its release for no other reason than to see if the band have progressed from what I've heard on Space Revolver.

Unfortunately (for me) this album is being true to The Flower Kings tradition and therefore features a rehash of an uneven set of tracks were some are good while others are forgettable but non is really that progressive. I think that recruiting Daniel Gildenlöw was a failed idea since his vocals don't fit the bands overall sound and makes Adam & Eve seem even more dark and pretentious, that is if the title isn't pretentious enough on its own.

I'm definitely a much bigger fan of Pain Of Salvation's music and in a way this album can be considered a lite version of a Pain Of Salvation-album which lacks both instrumentally and composition-wise in comparison to their regular output.

This is once again an album that I can't really hate and although I totally agree with Sean Trane and his reviews of The Flower Kings catalog I'll still give it a good but non-essential rating. Having said that I doubt that there is any reason for me to hear any more titles from this band's rapidly expanding discography.

**** star songs: Love Supreme (19:50) Cosmic Circus (3:00) Babylon (2:41) Days Gone By (1:10) Adam & Eve (7:50) Drivers Seat (18:22) The Blade Of Cain (5:00)

*** star songs: A Vampires View (8:50) Starlight Man (3:30) Timelines (7:40)

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Send comments to Rune2000 (BETA) | Report this review (#261911)
Posted Thursday, January 21, 2010 | Review Permalink
lazland
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars The second of my trawl through my Flower Kings albums for review, this is a release from 2004.

As with all of the band's releases, the one thing you can expect is an album packed with extremely accomplished musicanship.

Adam & Eve opens with a fantastic epic track, Love Supreme, clocking in at over 19 minutes long. It never once loses the listener's attention. Stolt's voice has, to me, never sounded better, and there is a glorious mix of guitars and, especially, bass from Reingold. As with much of their best symphonic works, the track is deeply reminiscent of Yes' glory days, and, again, this is very much meant as a compliment. The mellotron passages are amongst the best you will hear. Epic in scope and execution, this is a highly pleasing start.

Cosmic Circus is a lovely melodic short three minute song, with again some nice mellotron and keyboard work backed by acoustic guitar. I find this a deeply uplifting song, the sort you would play when you really need a fillip from life's worries.

Babylon is even shorter at under three minutes, this is another uplifting track, but presented as an instrumental. The keyboard playing by Bodin really is beautiful, and is accompanied by some lovely acoustic guitar work. Not all accomplished symphonic rock has to be epic in length, and this is definitely no filler.

A Vampire's View comes in at just under nine minutes, and this is my least favourite track on the album. Brooding and, unfortunately, sounding lyrically and vocally like something you would expect to see & hear in a London West End musical theatre production, there are, nonetheless, some redeeming features, especially again the keyboard waves that feature during the chorus. This track, though, is simply far too melodramatic to work very effectively.

Days Gone By clocks in at a mere 1:14 minutes long, and, thankfully, brings a lighter tone to the album again with a very solid and pleasant piano solo. Yes, it's a filler, but it is a good one.

The title track itself is next. This is a far harder and darker affair, but, thankfully, it doesn't fall into the same melodramatic trap as A Vampire's View. Whilst much of what preceded this track is recognisably symphonic, this track most certainly moves into Heavy prog territory, and Reingold simply takes the breath away with the most fantastic bass line. The sort of track that will turn even the most sceptical heavy prog person into that particular sub-genre.

Starlight Man reverts to the more gentle feel of the album, and really should have been a hit single for the band if there were any justice and musical taste in the world. I love Stolt's sunny vocals on this track, and he is backed by yet another incredible bass guitar melody by Reingold. A fantastic track.

Timelines opening passage takes us back to a very dark and menacing place, with wild keyboards, guitars, drums, and bass all competing manically for control. However, very quickly, it reverts to a Stolt lyric backed by acoustic guitar. Midway through, there is a lovely, almost jammy and jazzy instrumental passage with organ & guitar competing with each other. The song then becomes far more manic again. This is not a bad piece of music, quite the opposite, but it is very disjointed, almost like a jigsaw puzzle being put together, and I think a bit more coherence in the musical themes would have helped.

Drivers Seat is the second epic track on the album, and this one clocks in at 18 and a half minutes. Firmly placing the album back into grandiose symphonic prog, the track has many mood changes, and is, to my mind, right up there with the finest of the many epic tracks the band has produced. Some have criticised it for being somewhat bitty, but certainly, to me, it flows far better than the predecessor track. Think Yes in the Fragile era, updated to 2004, and you will be somewhere near the mark. I must also say, following on from that, that Squire himself rarely sounded better than Reingold does here. The man is an incredible bassist. At 11 minutes in, the track comes to a complete halt before slowly building up to its closing phases. Incredibly, it works, as the whimsical guitar gives way to the main event. The final instrumental to close the track is as good as you will ever hear in the entire genre.

The album closes with The Blade of Cain. A wonderful atmospheric track, and a great way to close a very strong album. There really is some lovely and haunting guitar work on this piece of music.

This is an album which is very highly recommended. The album avoids falling into the trap that the band sometimes fall into, that of making an album that is simply too long and sometimes meandering to hold the attention. With the exception of A Vampire's View, there is not a weak and forgettable track included, and I have no hesitation in awarding it a very strong four stars.

If, like me, you are a relative newcomer to The Flower Kings, you will not regret buying this and persevering with it in order to realise that we are dealing with one of the all time great prog acts.

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Send comments to lazland (BETA) | Report this review (#282661)
Posted Wednesday, May 19, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars My first encounter with the music of The Flower Kings was this album. I fell in love with them the minute I heard the first seconds of Love Supreme. Here is my take on this album:

1. Love Supreme. Awesome. The singing, lyrics and music all come alive. You can almost touch the music. Amazing. 5 out of 5

2. Cosmic Circus. Never thought Love Supreme could be beat. Well, this did it for me. I have listened to it many, many times. 5 out of 5

3. Babylon. One of their greatest instrumental piece. The mood and atmosphere are great. Magnificent. 5 out of 5.

4. A Vampire View. A blast to listen to. The singing is very powerful. The lyrics and the theme are very different and dark. 5 out of 5.

5. Days gone By. Another great instrumental piece. So far, so good. 5 out of 5.

6. Adam and Eve. This one didn't work for me. Too bad. 2 out of 5.

7. Starlight man. This is much better. Stolt voice is amazing. Great little song. 4.5 out of 5.

8. Timelines. Didn't work for me. I never listen to it. 1 out of 5.

9. Drivers Seat. Another one that I don't enjoy. 2 out of 5.

10. The Blade of Cain. Perfect, perfect song. The ending made me feel awed. The music and vocals are almost "magical" in the end. Superb ending to my discovery of the Flower Kings.

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Send comments to pots555 (BETA) | Report this review (#286042)
Posted Friday, June 11, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars Hands up if you didn't expect this to be any good? Yup. me too. Everyone seems to scorn this album, but I'm amazed that they do, as I found it to be really good.

When I first heard it I thought 'I actually quite like this', but then expected it to wear thin the more that I listened. But that just hasn't happened.

Gone, it seems are the overly-long 'epics', which can end up being so insubstantial, and instead we have an album that marks the transition between one FK era and another.

Timewise, some songs appear to be long, but they change and vary throughout, instead of simply getting 'lost'. What's more, for me at least, it's still progressively 'deep'. These are not 'Pop' songs. It's a brooding, thoroughly FK mix throughout, and it withstands repeated listening.

I'm not to sure about the 'X files' sound in 'Babylon' (because it just reminds me of the 'X files'...), however overall their sound is still there. There's less 'fat' and the sound is perhaps more focused.

For me, this is a positive effort, and as such deserves a positive mark. I hope that others will not be put off listening to it, as I was originally.

In a recent poll, I could only muster 9 'best' Prog albums of the noughties. This album probably becomes that evasive tenth.

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Send comments to sussexbowler (BETA) | Report this review (#307222)
Posted Friday, October 29, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars This was the first album of The Flower Kings I could hear in full . This is a really good album , perhaps the best one I've heard so far which .In him we have the presence of Daniel Gildenlöw as an official member of the band (even if it was only here) . All the songs are really interesting, except or "The Vampire's View", a "filler" absolutely dull, and some short songs disappointing.

On the other hand there are really wonderful works here, and the best songs here are the opening track , "Love Supreme "(one of the best songs of the band) , the delicate piano solo of " Days Gone By "(courtesy of Thomas Bodin) the title track (a track completely different from anything that The Flower Kings have made-this song has more Daniel's face, and that is why there is so good) and the final music , "The blade of cain", which starts with a powerful guitar solo and ends with the vocals repeating theme of "Love Supreme".

An album worthy of four stars for sure!

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Send comments to voliveira (BETA) | Report this review (#319962)
Posted Sunday, November 14, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars Another classical TFK work, being as average good as the precedent ones (I mean around 4/5). Again, it contains the main stuff : the epics, which are both over the 18-minut mark, and are full of variations, punches, odd time sigs and the magic of Bodin on keys. I would signal a little defect for my ears, i.e. in "Drivers Seat", when the sound completely stops... Silence... Too long. It is disturbing, even if there is nothing ! But, it remains a great track, if you can go over it (a little 'fastforward' is ok...), along with "Love Supreme", which is fun to listen to, with many instrumental developments and intensity.

The remaining tracks are better than on other CD's, I mean comparing to the other non-epics ones. It is a big-plus here, compared to the previous production. "Cosmic Circus", "Babylon" and "Starlight Man" are short but very melodic, with a tremendous sound. "A Vampires View" is also interesting, containing a new atmosphere to TFK. The track "Adam & Eve" is heavy, punchy and has an original musical "pause", before getting to the heavy feeling again. And the last track "the Blade of Cain" is maybe one of the best short instrumentals that TFK has ever done, with an intensity that rises and rises, from the smooth debut to the climax, where TFK go for a lot of tone changes. Marvelous.

I have in mind all the other CD's, in order to set a rating. And I should remind the previous other epics, which are the main references to evaluate all this (it is their 8th, on a total of 10 CD's, for which I go in order, up to the last)... Up to now, "Stardust we Are" and "Flower Power" deserve the rating of 5/5, because some epics are a top-reference to me in the whole world of prog ! Not quite here...

Well, because of a few 'unperfections', the one in "Dr. Seat", the overall feeling that it is excellent, but not more... I would say something like 4.2 ! An interesting opus, again, long, varied, an excellent addition in a sympho-prog collection.

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Send comments to Progdaybay (BETA) | Report this review (#378971)
Posted Wednesday, January 12, 2011 | Review Permalink
colorofmoney91
PROG REVIEWER
1 stars When The Flower Kings were suggested to me a few years ago, I wasn't expecting such a cheesy sounding band. Roine Stolt is definitely a respectable musician with lots of integrity regarding the progressive rock genre and I always try to follow what he does if not only for the sake of knowing what such a great guitarist has in the projects.

However, this album is just boring and random. There are a few nice melodies here and there, but most of the music just sounds uninspired, which is quite a pity for a story line as ambitious as this (apparently based on the tale of Adam & Eve with a few experimental touches, like... vampires). I guess I just don't get it, and I've over the years decided that symphonic prog isn't really my jam. However, my guitar instructor who adores vintage symphonic prog absolutely adores this album and band, so I'm sure many other people would too.

This all seems like vintage symphonic progressive rock with a few modern touches. If that is you're "thing", then you might as well check this album out.

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Send comments to colorofmoney91 (BETA) | Report this review (#431194)
Posted Monday, April 11, 2011 | Review Permalink
5 stars Ok, Adam & Eve by The Flower Kings, an album that divides even the hardcore fans of the band. For me though it's an excellent album and one of the best of their later works (an era I find . The first few minutes of the opening epic Love Supreme are the most derivative of any TFK epic, (you can't help but hear Yes) however the second half of the piece is pure Flower Kings and is fantastic.

You'd do well to find a more gorgeous couplet than the following combination of Cosmic Circus/Babylon. Tomas Bodin really gets to shine on the wonderful instrumental Babylon. I have to be in the mood for A Vampires View, a gothic theatrical piece which strongly features the pained vocals of Daniel Gildenlow, but next up Days Gone By is stunning. Its a wonderfully moody solo piano number and echoes a similar piece from one of Tomas' solo albums though I struggle to recall the title of that. The title track is great, but I love all the TFK "rockers" so no surprise there. Timelines and Starlight Man are for me the weaker points of the album, but still very decent. Drivers Seat, the penultimate track is amazing, end of story. This clocks in at close to 19 minutes and is for me one of TFK's best epics without a doubt. It's choc-full of gorgeous melodies and sublime contributions from the whole band. Its followed by the closing Blade of Cain, a sumptuous and dramatic instrumental with some mindbending guitar from Roine Stolt. The album would get 4.5 stars for me. And being me, I'd just have to round it up to 5.

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Send comments to Roj (BETA) | Report this review (#751722)
Posted Friday, May 11, 2012 | Review Permalink
UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Adam & Eve" is the 8th full-length studio album by Swedish progressive rock act The Flower Kings. The album was released through InsideOut Music in August 2004. The 7- piece lineup features Daniel Gildenlöw of Pain of Salvation as a permanent member of the band. Gildenlöw had made guest appearances on both "Unfold The Future (2002)" and the live album "Meet The Flower Kings (2003)".

As usual with a Flower Kings album, "Adam & Eve" is filled to the brim with music. 10 tracks distributed over a 79:15 minutes long playing time. This time around it´s only a one disc album though (The Flower Kings have released several double disc albums). The music style is symphonic progressive rock with strong 70s progressive rock and hard rock leanings (even jazz rock/fusion at times). As such no surprise considering that it´s the style the band have played since the beginning. It´s safe to say that "Adam & Eve" isn´t a revolution of the band´s signature sound. With The Flower Kings that is of less importance though, as they always deliver quality releases.

"Adam & Eve" opens with the 19:50 minutes long mastodont of a track "Love Supreme". A track featuring a very uplifting mood, and almost needless to say, a complex structure and many different sections. Vintage synths/keyboards, soaring guitar solos, harmony vocals and adventurous rythmic playing are some of the signature elements of the band´s music and all those are used on this album too. Some tracks are uplifting like "Love Supreme" while others like "A Vampires View" are slightly darker sounding.

Quality wise there´s little to put a finger on. The sound production is powerful, organic and detailed, the musicianship is excellent and the songwriting reeks of class. However I still don´t feel "Adam & Eve" is among the band´s strongest releases. Some of the tracks (including the 18:22 minutes long "Drivers Seat") are just too "standard" for The Flower Kings and some don´t leave enough impact. The three standout tracks to me are "Love Supreme", "A Vampires View" and the title track. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

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Send comments to UMUR (BETA) | Report this review (#1078775)
Posted Monday, November 18, 2013 | Review Permalink
kev rowland
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Crossover Team
4 stars I wasn't the only one to be extremely disappointed with the last Flower Kings CD, as although they have some excellent ideas and are superb musicians, there was the feeling that the effect would have been much better if there had been someone to cut the CD from a double to a single. So it was with a little trepidation that I put this in the player. I certainly didn't expect to be playing the most consistent album since Roine's own 'The Flower King' album which started this all off. The first song, ''Love Supreme'', is twenty minutes long, but stays interesting throughout. It is packed full of Yes references, but is much more than just a copied style as The Flower Kings' manage to make it very much their own.

Shorter songs intersperse the longer ones, and even though there is another song that is over eighteen minutes in length there is never a feeling that they have outstayed their welcome. ''Vampires View'' at nine minutes is a delight, a gothic dark number with sinister overtones that certainly never feels as if it comes from Scandinavia as it the sort of eclectic number that surely could only be English. If you have investigated this band before but have been put off by the sense of self interest and 'aren't we clever', then rest assured that this is an outstanding return to form with strong songs and musicianship throughout. A must for all progheads.

Originally appeared in Feedback #80, Sept 2004

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Send comments to kev rowland (BETA) | Report this review (#1112349)
Posted Saturday, January 11, 2014 | Review Permalink
3 stars The Flower Kings eighth studio album from 2004, "Adam & Eve" is as usual with this band a massive collection of songs. It takes some times to get everything out of the record. Released between two even massiver and very good albums this album is something of a filler in the band's discography. I don't like the cover at all, it looks pathetic in my eyes with a gorilla male and a fairytale woman. I am used to some more appealing covers from this band.

The present musicians are Roine Stolt, Tomas Bodin, Hans Fröberg, Daniel Gildenlöw, Hasse Bruniusson, Jonas Reingold and Zoltan Csörsz and the record is one and a half hour. The worst thing with "Adam & Eve" is in some ways the first track, the twenty minutes "Love Supreme". Usually the "epics" are the best and actually this song contains some totally wonderful parts with something of Yes, (but mostly Flower Kings). Those parts are instrumental. The main vocal theme is horrible, and I don't either like the way they sing it(6/10). Then are the other long song much better: "Drivers Seat" is a lovely and very varied track with great musicality, that is the gem of the album and it's actually better than the rest together(9/10). Beside this long track, the album's shortest is also among the best: "Days Gone By" where piano is dominant pleases my ears a lot(8/10). "Cosmic Circus" and "Timelines" are two other nice and harmonic songs(7/10) but the title track "Adam & Eve" is also destroyed by the vocals(5/10). The other songs could you listen to as well but I don't think they'll thrill you a lot.

Give the record some time, if you like the thought about this music. It has a lot to explain. Though does is feel a bit clumpsy here and there and I wouldn't recommend it as an introduction to the band's music. The album passes and gets three solid stars from me. "Drivers seat" is the best song, listen to that at first, then perhaps continue, but don't look at the cover.

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Send comments to DrömmarenAdrian (BETA) | Report this review (#1209096)
Posted Friday, July 11, 2014 | Review Permalink

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