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RHETORIC

Credo

Neo-Prog


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4 stars CREDO's new CD sounds very modern & catchy from first listening. It's highly melodic & harmonic neo-prog. Wonderful melodic-lines on guitars, beautiful majestic keyboard-parts from new keyboarder Mike Varty (Janison Edge, Shadowland and now Landmarq) combined with brilliant basslines.

Best songs ? Uhhh...difficult to say, actually everything's good on this, but the both longtracks "...to the Grave","The Game" and "Too late..."/"..to Say Goodbye" are my absolute favorites.

Great Stuff, guys !!!

You can simply compare the "new" CREDO with ARENA, MARILLION, GREY LADY DOWN, JANISON EDGE. I highly recommanded this CD to all fans of melodic neo-prog. This is no typical boring stuff. It's a must have in your collection and one of the best neo-prog-CDs in 2005! A wonderful piece of music...give it a try, it's worth to check it out...

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Send comments to Grendelbox (BETA) | Report this review (#51351)
Posted Wednesday, October 12, 2005 | Review Permalink
kev rowland
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Crossover Team
5 stars Just to let you all know the score between me and this band, at one time in their career I was getting gigs for them and assisting them with promotion etc. I was there the night when the contract with Cyclops Records was signed for 'Field Of Vision', and this album has followed only eleven years later. Singer Mark Colton and I first got in touch with each other when he was with Casual Affair: when that band broke up I then wrote the newsletter for his next band Freewill, and when he joined Chequered Past (later renamed Credo) I started following them around as well. When I got married only two people knew in advance as they were the witnesses, and one of these was Mark. Many years later I was asked by Mark and his wife Elaine to be godfather to their younger son, and I even traipsed out to see him one night front a folk rock band called Phyre!

So, there you have it. Eleven years is a long time for any band to produce their second album, during which time more than a few things have happened. Musically they brought in Shadowland (and currently Landmarq) keyboard wiz Mike Varty which changed their sound as it meant that Tim Birrell finally had someone to play against (poor old Mik Stovold was never in the same league), while drummer Paul Clarke announced one night after a blinding gig that he was also off and he was replaced by Martin Meads from the aforementioned folk group! The line-up is completed of course by the one and only Jim Murdoch who as well as playing bass also assists Mike with the backing vocals. And then there is Mark, who got married, had two children, and was at one point only thirty minutes from dying. Luckily there were some very clever consultants around that managed to keep him in this world, but there were many who thought that this album would never be completed. Even now he is still having to attend hospital and is a long way from being fully fit, but he is back singing and very much full of enthusiasm for the band.

The album which I first heard clips from back when Mark was still single has finally made it out. It seems years since I was in the studio listening to Martin lay down the drum tracks with Karl Groom et al, but it was. There can probably be as few waiting so eagerly for the finished product as I, and it wasn't until the CD finally arrived that I believed that it was real. Looking at the track listing I recognised many from those heady days playing in Staines and other toilets, but putting it on the player I know that it never sounded like this! This is polished neo-prog that we never hear these days, songs with a meaning, with a singer who can turn on the vitriol when he needs and somehow is also singing better than ever - given what Mark was going through during this process the result is nothing short of incredible as they have produced an album that is going to rate as one of the best of the year, whatever the genre. But you're biased I hear you cry, and maybe I am, but hopefully those who know me would realise that if I felt that this was under par then I would say so. It just isn't possible to fault this in any way - Mike is an incredible keyboard player as anyone who has seen him will agree. There aren't many who have been chosen by Clive Nolan to fill his own shoes, while Tim Birrell managed to shrug off an approach from Fish who wanted him for his own band and who is I firmly believe one of the best guitarists around, and is Credo's secret weapon as no-one outside of those who follow the band know who he is! Martin and Jim have a real understanding, nailing the rhythm to the floor either slowly or flying with a passion, and then there is Mark. Mark is probably more of a frontman than just a singer, as he throws himself into every performance with passion, but here he has proved what a bloody good singer he is as well.

Nine songs, with two of them over eleven minutes in length, but the one that I feel has to be singled out appears half way through the album and is just under eight minutes long. I was there at The Compasses the night that "The Letter" had its first public airing, the night when the person that it was directed at fled to the toilets in tears. Back then it was full of passion and incredible guitar, but somehow it has now become so much more. If ever a song builds to a climax then this is it, with Mike much more to the fore - giving the song balance, while Jim also changes his bass approach during the song which gives it further depth. There is a polish and togetherness which wasn't there before, with the vocals flowing and providing the background for Mark to vent his passion, his anger. I could rave about all of these songs - the wonderful intro to "The Game" or the closing masterpiece that is "Seems Like Yesterday", but all the numbers have benefited from a new approach and cleaner, sharper, but also very layered, arrangements.

There are various quotes within the well-designed booklet, one of which is "Nostalgia isn't what it used to be" and while in some ways I look back to those days when Credo were playing anywhere and everywhere, even driving up the M1 to Mansfield, but I know that the band I prefer are the one who have finally released their second album, an album that is going to surprise and delight a great many people. 'Rhetoric' is a delight, an album of great songs by a band who have been through a lot to get this far - so now is the time to support them by going out and buying it. For more details on the band visit www.credo.gb.com or buy the album from www.progrock.co.uk. It doesn't get any better than this.

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Send comments to kev rowland (BETA) | Report this review (#52824)
Posted Saturday, October 22, 2005 | Review Permalink
tmoura@hotmai
5 stars First of all I must say it took me a long time to get this CD. I read the favourable reviews, but then I saw many others on bands I found they did not add much, at least to me. When I finally decided to get this CD I was not expecting much. Boy, was I wrong! Wonderful melodies, superb musicanship and a very fine lead singer. Yes, the music is very much in the neo prog vein of old Marillion, but they do have a personality and they sound fresh and exciting all the way through the entire CD. I'm really surprised they are not as well known as they should be. If you have any doubts just listen to a track like The Letter: this highly emotional song alone is worth the price of the CD alone! It gives me goose bumps everytime I hear it. and there's 8 more winners to make this one of the finest neo prog albums of the new millenium. NO fillers here. I really hope this band release new stuff like that in the near future. Highly recommended indeed!

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Send comments to (BETA) | Report this review (#81100)
Posted Tuesday, June 13, 2006 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Karl Groom did the drum engineering and mixing at "Thin Ice Studios". Seems to be a concept album about the relationship between a man and a woman. Lots of famous quotes in the liner notes.The emphasis is on the synths and the vocals, and there are some tasteful guitar solos as well.

Best part of the first track "Skintrade" is before 6 minutes when it kicks in with some excellent guitar. "Turn The Gun" is better than the first song, I like the passionate vocals and background synths.The tempo changes often. "From The Cradle..." and "...To The Grave" are pretty good songs but the focus is on the lyrics.The highlight for me is "The Letter" a very emotional tune with Gilmour-like guitar early. Nice bass before 3 minutes too.

"The Game" is pretty good one with lots of synths and piano early and some more beautiful guitar. "Too Late..." sounds good to start out with those drums. Piano takes over then vocals join in. Not a bad record at all, good vocals too. "...To Say Goodbye" sounds good to begin with as those acoustic guitar melodies shine with drums and synths. Vocals eventually arrive. Excellent tune. "Seems Like Yesterday" ends the album in style. I like the synths and strummed guitar.The sound does get fuller.

Good album but nothing more.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#95866)
Posted Thursday, October 26, 2006 | Review Permalink
4 stars I got this on the recomendation of fellow prog reviewers and have not been disappointed.

Very much in the vein of perhaps SHADOWLAND with elements of many other Neo Prog, the last track - Seems Like Yesterday - is an absolute stunner. No real weaknesses though a bit 'samey' at times. Excellent keyboards guitars with a simple but very effective flowing bass line. Melodic to the extreme, very catchy without being naff (if that makes sense?).

The last track though that just gets into your brain and wont let go!

Worthy of the 4 star rating - But if they were all as good as that final track....

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Send comments to huge (BETA) | Report this review (#149101)
Posted Monday, November 05, 2007 | Review Permalink
5 stars I saw this band at ROSFest 2008 and they absolutely blew me away (although the review of their performance in the latest issue of Progression Magazine was lukewarm, which puzzles me). Everyone sitting in my vicinity also seemed to be really into the show, and Credo's lead singer did a wonderful job getting the crowd into it. It was the kind of performance that sticks with you for a long time afterwards. I went to buy a copy of Rhetoric after the show but they were sold out, so I waited until NEARFest to pick up a copy and I must say that it was tough to wait that long. I'm listening to this album right now and the emotion of it is absolutely stunning. Credo's music is reminiscent of early Marillion and the singer is reminiscent of Fish but they're distinct enough to not be a ripoff. Overall, I'd say that Rhetoric is one of the best neo-progressive albums of this decade - right up there with Dark Matter by I.Q. and Under a New Sign by Knight Area. So if you're even a casual fan of neo-progressive music then I would highly recommend this CD. The only problem is that it's really difficult to find a copy!

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Send comments to wimerd (BETA) | Report this review (#198811)
Posted Tuesday, January 13, 2009 | Review Permalink
5 stars For most of us, Credo is one of those English bands you've heard about but haven't heard. It's time to change that. Rhetoric offers little in the way of innovation, it pushes no envelopes, and it won't challenge anyone. But it's a bloody fine listen, and if Credo's style of progressive rock appeals to you, this record is - quite simply - a must-have. Imagine a polished, modern-day, brilliantly mixed and produced version of Fish-era Marillion. Yes, kids, it's neo-progressive rock. And no, kids, that isn't a dirty word. It's a little lighter than Marillion, though, and similar bands that spring to mind are Arena and IQ, particularly because along with Fish, those acts feature powerful, angst-ridden vocals delivering lyrics that actually mean something. Each song tells a story that you can follow, and the listening experience is considerably enriched if you read the prose while listening.

The track listing shows 9 songs, but that's misleading. "Too Late..." and "...To Say Goodbye" flow seamlessly into one another, yielding a rich 12-minute piece that tells two sides of the same love story using powerful melodies and a catchy, lilting cadence to the lyrics. Similarly, "From The Cradle..." and "...To The Grave" are really joined at the hip, and play like a 20-minute epic that examines the horrors of World War I. Listen for the delicate piano work, the violin and the Fish-like singing. This is probably the most melodic - and certainly the most moving - piece on an already emotional album.

This is music with a purpose. "Skin Trade" examines the seedy life of a young girl drawn into porn, "Turn The Gun" looks at an assassination from the shooter's point of view, and "The Letter" starts softly - with someone writing a letter to a lover, and as the writer's anger builds, the letter morphs into a song (i.e. the one you're listening to) - ending in a wall of sound expressing how hurtful the lies have been. The details are so vivid you have to assume the song conveys a real experience.

So think of this as 7 songs in 69 minutes - for an average track length of around 10 minutes. And Credo uses that time wisely, building wonderfully managed tempo shifts into their sophisticated songwriting. The structures move and flow from soft ballads to huge walls of sound, and from vocal-driven sections to all instrumental bridges dominated by powerful guitar and keyboard interaction.

All 5 artists deliver top-drawer performances, and the band's mature sophistication and depth of experience - stretching back as far as 1972 - are abundantly clear.

Apparently Credo delivers an excellent live performance. Let's hope we see them in the USA soon, and that the wait for their third album will be a lot shorter than the 11 years it took to produce Rhetoric.

Duncan Glenday - Sea Of Tranquility

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Send comments to Credo Man (BETA) | Report this review (#225090)
Posted Wednesday, July 08, 2009 | Review Permalink
baz91
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars It took me a while to fully enjoy this CD, but the patience has paid off. This is a great little album, with surprisingly catchy riffs! One thing to note is the definite similarities with Fish-era Marillion. While sporting a very neo-prog sound, the lead singer Mark Colton also has an uncannily similar voice to Fish himself. Let's dive into this great album.

Skintrade is a 'classic' Credo song, if there ever was such a thing. The lyrics set the dark mood for the album: 'Another 14-year old first time whore.' This song is quite memorable and has some very good riffs. A highlight for me is the singing of 'Maga-zi-zi-zine'.

Turn The Gun is less memorable than Skintrade, but it's still a good song, with aggressive riffs and great lyrics.

The next two songs form a single 19 minute epic track From The Cradle To The Grave. The first half is a relatively poppy track with a great guitar solo in the centre. I wasn't too sure about the chorus at first, but it grows on you. The second, and longer half is more progressive in nature. The second half is quite aesthetically pleasing as it starts with a 3 minute instrumental and ends with a 3 minute instrumental. The latter instrumental is just fantastic and lets guitarist Tim Birrell and keys player Mike Varty show off what they've got. The remaining 6 minutes of this song feature some great lyrics and stunning riffs. All in all this makes a great epic track about the trials and tribulations of love between two people.

The Letter is quite a clever piece. As the track continues, it gets more and more aggressive, climaxing with the shouting of 'You Lied!'. There is precious little instrumental on this track though.

Probably the catchiest part of this album is the chorus to The Game. In fact, I'd go as far as to say that this is very much a pop song that has been somehow made into a prog song (in a good way). I say this mainly because it has three verses and three choruses. However these are stretched out over 11 minutes, and there is a lot of progressive playing in this track making it very good listening. The melancholy ending to this track is very tasteful.

To Late To Say Goodbye is inspired by World War I, and a picture of soldiers from this era can be found underneath the CD in the case. The first half of this piece is more rocky than the second half. The second half of this track feels more like a tribute to those soldiers. The second half is genuinely moving and ends with the sound of explosions and gunfire.

Seems Like Yesterday is a very different sounding track altogether. This relatively short track begins with a guitar intro and ends with an anthemic instrumental. I don't find this track particularly memorable, but it's a good song nonetheless.

I am very glad to have this album in my library. It is not very deeply progressive: the songs are long, but the arrangements are never very complex. For a progressive album, the lyrics are also extremely literal, and it's a sort of awakening to hear such hard-hitting lyrics after listening to mainly fantastical and mystical lyrics. The songs are a lot of fun, and as I experienced just last night, they sound great live! If I had to give some criticism though, I'd say that there are too many lyrics, which can on occasion feel overwhelming. 'Rhetoric' is an album full of emotion and meaning, and is an album that any band could be proud of.

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Send comments to baz91 (BETA) | Report this review (#435035)
Posted Sunday, April 17, 2011 | Review Permalink
Tarcisio Moura
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars This one is really interesting for fans of the old school of neo. First of all I must say it took me a long time to get this CD. I read the favourable reviews, but then I saw many others on bands that I found they did not add much to the musical scene, at least to me. so I was not in a hurry anyway. When I finally decided to get this CD I was not expecting much. Boy, was I wrong! Wonderful melodies, superb musicanship and a very fine lead singer. Yes, the music is very much in the neo prog vein of old Fish era Marillion, but they do have a personality and they sound fresh and exciting all the way through the entire CD.

I'm really surprised they are not as well known as they should be. If you have any doubts just listen to a track like The Letter: this highly emotional song alone is worth the price of the CD! Its slowly built up with fine guitar lines and wonderful symphonic keybords help to add the tension implied in the lyrics as the story unfolds to make a terrific melodical explosion at the end. It gives me goose bumps everytime I hear it. and there's 8 more winners to make this one of the finest neo prog albums of the new millenium. NO fillers here. I really hope this band release new stuff like that in the near future. Highly recommended indeed!

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Send comments to Tarcisio Moura (BETA) | Report this review (#444985)
Posted Monday, May 09, 2011 | Review Permalink
SouthSideoftheSky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Symphonic Team
3 stars 'Rhetoric and lies'

My first acquaintance with the songs from Credo's second album, Rhetoric, was not with this studio album version but with the live DVD release This Is What We Do on which all of the tracks from this album are featured in live versions (though not in the same running order as on the studio CD). It was not until much later that I heard this original studio version of Rhetoric and needless to say what I first heard on the live DVD did not create a strong enough desire in me to search out the studio album at the time, though I guess I always intended to do so at some point or other. And now I finally did. Frankly, I expected the studio versions to be very similar to the live versions and to add little or nothing of value to what I already had, and I was indeed very right about this. Still, both the live DVD and the studio album are worthy releases in their own right.

In many (most?) reviews of Neo-Prog albums one can read that the band in question is derivative and similar to Fish-era Marillion. Very often such accusations are inappropriate and out of place, but regarding Credo's Rhetoric it is actually very apt. Rhetoric is a concept album that revolve mostly around love, (failed) relationships and emotions of loss, etc. Both the lyrics and the vocals here are heavily in the 'romantic' style of Fish and (like some of Fish's lyrics) some of the lyrics here are rather self-indulgent and naive. The lyrics of The Letter, which is musically one of the strongest numbers on this album, are really pathetic! I guess we all feel something like this sometimes, but expressed like this it comes across as self-indulgent in the extreme. As I have mentioned in some previous reviews, I would like to call the style of the music found on Rhetoric 'romantic' Prog. Other examples of this style are Marillion (especially Misplaced Childhood) and Clive Nolan's Shadowland (especially the Ring Of Roses album).

This album is hardly original or ground-breaking in any sense and I think it is fair to say that it is a rather typical British Neo-Prog release, heavily in the tradition of 80's Marillion. As such, it is far from the worst, but also not the best. Credo were still struggling to find their own musical identity at this time and while they clearly are competent musicians and all of the songs here are good, it is hard to be impressed by anything on Rhetoric. If traditional British Neo-Prog is your favourite type of music, you probably cannot go wrong with this album. But the classic Prog purists should avoid this like the plague.

Good, but certainly not essential

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Send comments to SouthSideoftheSky (BETA) | Report this review (#459614)
Posted Monday, June 13, 2011 | Review Permalink
5 stars This is the best album I have heard in a long time. Why did it take me six years to find it? Who knows, but now it is in my collection it will be regularly played. It is classic neoprog, so if you like Marillion, Arena and IQ, it compares with the very best these other bands have to offer. Almost 70 minutes of music and not a wasted note. The lyrics are very good too. The tracks From the Cradle and To the Grave are essentially one long track as are Too Late and To Say Goodbye, so the album has 7 tracks, which gives an average track length of 10 minutes.

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Send comments to TartanTantrum (BETA) | Report this review (#470628)
Posted Monday, June 27, 2011 | Review Permalink
Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Oh man ... I love this one!!!

I am totally newbie in understanding the music of Credo because I only knew the band from their "Against Reason" album which I already gave my views right here at this wonderful website. I put my overall comment as the heading of my views as "You don't need to push the envelope to make good music". And now I am more convinced when I am tracing back their previous album "Rhetoric". Yes, actually the music of Credo is not something new and I would say it's an OLD SKUL neo-prog music which bands like Pallas, Pendragon, IQ, Marillion and those that follow. Well, sometimes I don't understand actually what is my musical taste as I am a great believer that "music is emotion" and of course it should be something to do with musical taste as well. Indeed, I love wide range of music in the genre of progressive music, from symphonic, progmet, jazz rock fusion, eclectic and in fact I also enjoy krautrock and caterbury as well. What kind of person I am! That's OK ....as long as the music really stirs my emotion - why bother with categorization? Music is music period!

It's the same, it's different ...

That's what I felt the first time I spun this album couple of days ago when I enjoyed it in its entirety. Man ... I have to admit that I was hooked with the musical flow these gentlemen offer in this excellent album. Frankly, I felt nothing new about the music and it's basically telling me "It's me ...! It's the kind of music that I have been through since late 70s and early 80s which sometimes I felt bored with some bands that follow the path of Marillion, but actually not quite good in making the music ...". There are many segments that bring me into true neo-prog nuances and it's so captivating listening to the stunning guitar solo that really kills me, the beautiful melody that is sung by the lead vocalist, the soaring keyboard work, the tight basslines.... Oh man .... everything is so nice. It's different because every single song gives me good experience and it's different with other neo-prog songs ....

I can feel there is cohesiveness of musical composition and real performance these gentlemen perform in this album. The opening track "Skin Trade" already shows the dynamics of Credo's music through its stunning guitar solo, tight basslines and good vocal work. In the context of individual song, there are segments with great melody, variety of styles as well as ups and downs in terms of energy - there are mellow parts as well as energetic or high-energy styles. The acoustic guitar part in the middle of track 3 "From the Cradle" followed with electric guitar solo is really a killer even though the song is actually a mellow one with clear lead vocal work. From one song to another one there seems like a good position of tracks because at the end the whole album provides me a good insight on what sort of music they offer. The metric is simple: at the end of the last track I wanted to repeat the music again. That's an important metric.

In terms of melody all songs were composed beautifully so that the listeners got a chance to enjoy the music not just on the prog elements of the music but also on how each segment ties beautifully with another. So, for those who concern about song orientated kind of music, yes man ... you got it right here! I can see this album provides song orientated view as well as progressive signatures over the music. I don't get bored to repeat the music from melody perspective because at the end I repeat again.

In terms of change of styles, there are many things you can find in terms of how melody takes turn and how the gentlemen in the band provide their solo work. Even though there is no 'abrupt' changes you can find throughout the album. Hey, remember ...this is neo-prog ....do not expect the music turns abruptly into jazz because this is neo-prog. It would be awkward if it turns dramatically into jazz kind of music. But the music still offers change of styles in the corridor of neo-prog music.

Overall Conclusion

With basically no major shortcomings, I definitely consider this album as an excellent addition to any prog music collection with overall rating of 4+. I invite you to enjoy this album and also "Against Reason" and write your views. What ever different your view, it does not matter to me because I always enjoy differing perspectives because we live in progressive world. Differing views are really welcome. OK man...let me re-spin this album from the beginning, again ...because ..... I LOVE IT! JRENG!..... Keep on proggin' ...!

(If do not review on song by song basis, it's because each individual song is excellent.)

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

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Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#510592)
Posted Sunday, August 28, 2011 | Review Permalink
tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Crossover Team
4 stars My personal view on the Neo prog controversy is scaled down to the core meanings, i.e. that when you combine 8 minute songs with the basic guitar, keys , bass and drums, throw in a Fish/Gabriel clone as a singer et Presto! Neo. The moment you add length, assorted 'classical' instruments such as flutes, brass, strings in liberal doses, you are now welcome in the Republic of Symphonic-Prog. My own tastes ride heavily on the symph side with a massive collection of stylized prog rock, even indulging in some electronica hybrids but I do have some serious Neo jewels (the list is long, just have to look up my review profile , now past the 500 mark !) that have blown me sideways. Let us not forget that Marillion saved our prog butt back when we all neared extinction and our gratitude should never waver. Credo is a new addition to the long series of recent Neo bands that have rocked our world such as Legend, Nine Stones Close, Anubis, Satellite, Leap Day and Introitus (they are "symphy" though), among many others.

So here is the recipe: Tim Birell on guitars, right out of the Rothery school but with occasional forays into other styles, Mike Varty supplies the keys that not only decorate but also paint a few slippery streaks on the musical canvas, the firm bass held down by Jim Murdoch keeps everyone in check while the Martin Meads drums are ruthless and yet seductive. All that is left is a vocalist that does wink at the 2 neo giants mentioned above but Marc Colton has his own style. A major plus is the crystalline production that provides a wide sonic berth that quickly envelops the listener. Theses prog vets then decide to put together a human theme that proves that we are not in the presence of random poppy tracks. They ain't poppy and there is a story for each song based on a famous quote. The musical story starts out in the finest Fish-era Marillion style on "Skintrade", a passionate voice that occasionally yelps in pain (like on Assassins) "technically obscene", swirling synth solos veering into the ether searching for "release" , pastoral acoustic guitar arpeggios that shimmer in the aural ecstasy and a clear sense of drama. The violent "Turn the Gun" is more rambunctious, as its title would imply, complete with an eerie middle section that hides between the two massively different bookends. The next 3 tracks form a sort of a mini-suite and is the undeniable heart of the recording , as both From the Cradle , To The Grave and the splendid The Letter combine to exalt, titillate and explode in a proggy paroxysm that is simply put stunning. "She cried herself to sleep last night" is just the opening seconds of a wondrous anthem, where music, lyrics and delivery are so attuned with each other that the emotion can seep through undiluted. The grandiose 2 part chorus is to expiate over just let the stupendous "Like bird in a gilded cage?. And she knows, she shows she can't let go?" flow over you and feel the angst. The subsequent axe solo evokes the deep pain brilliantly, finely chiseled and yet restrained, as if unbearable. The second stanza repeats the same feelings but with different words. Clever! "To the Grave" is the instrumental blow-out that divulges this band's capacity to adorn their craft with some interesting twists and turns, choir-mellotron aiding in the crime. "What gives you the right to rampage through my dreams", hmmmm back in early Marillion mood, not a bad thing that, especially when done this well. The extended jam is quite exceptional. The killer track remains the ballad "The Letter" a poignant eruption of melancholia, beautifully sung and expertly played. This is a bluesy, romantic dirge, exuding a sense of class that makes it timeless , not at all a pop song, but closer to PF than anything (some prog purists swear that Floyd is pop anyway!) . The brooding gets progressively intense (did I just use the P word?) and ratchets the "after all the hell I have been through" up quite a few notches, a Tim Birell fretjob adding to the slashes. Then things get outright angry and Colton really shows off his lungs and it hits home as I am dealing with a broken relationship right now. I will mail her the song and the lyrics soon. Not that it would change anything but a romantic is a romantic to the bitter end. "The Game" barrels forward all cylinders piercing the night air, another acerbic essay on infidelity and fluid relationships that find no anchor to weigh, just deep pain and disbelief. The brilliant 2 part mini-epic "Too Late" and "To Say Goodbye" is another stunner, the very essence of sad, melancholic prog done to the hilt, lyrically extremely vivid and disturbing. This time the theme is the futility of war "The eyes of exhaustion and those of the dead" . The finale "Seems Like Yesterday" puts this bleeding heart story to rest, proggy blues at its finest, healing words though painful they may be.

Granted, its not RIO or Avant-post-math-space but it's still definitely entertaining. Fans of Arena, IQ, Pendragon and Marillion will gobble this up but a wide array of prog fans will enjoy this for its melodic content and expert execution, perhaps some even shedding their silly misconception that Neo-prog sucks! Hey, the current media-music sucks, remember!!!! This is a very enjoyable hour of epic and uplifting music.

4.5 stylish doctrines

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Send comments to tszirmay (BETA) | Report this review (#603836)
Posted Thursday, January 05, 2012 | Review Permalink
Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars Now, this is much more like it! Whereas Credo's debut album was hampered by weak compositions, an excess of Fish-mimicry and poor production, Rhetoric solves all those problems twice over. The band's sound now resembles a mixture of Twelfth Night and early Pendragon, with just a pinch of influence from Arena and early Marillion plus some ideas which genuinely seem to be the band's own, and the album as a whole is a moving exploration of interpersonal relationships and their end - whether that's divorce, bereavement, or some other separation. It's a real treat for anyone keen on the first-wave neo-prog sound, and Credo more than deserve to step up to the front rank of the subgenre on the strength of it.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#681267)
Posted Saturday, March 24, 2012 | Review Permalink
apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Neo Prog Team
3 stars The extended tour for the promotion of ''Field of vision'' was followed by the departure of Mick Stovold, who was replaced by the experienced Mike Varty, who had spent time with Shadowland.In 1999 Credo started the workings around a second album, which were constantly interrupted by health issues and bad luck among the band members.When things started to roll again Martin Meads found himself behind the drum kit and the band was signed by F2 Music.The result of the positive facts was the release of ''Rhetoric'' in 2005.

The flat, uninspired and fairly accesible sound of Credo's debut was a thing of the past.''Rhetoric'' sounds very simlar to the darkest side of MARILLION, especially from the ''Fugazi'' sessions, and the short, unimaginative rockers of the debut have been replaced by long, deep and bombastic arrangements with strong nods to 80's British Prog, maybe a bit like ARENA, if you also add some slight FLOYD-ian and CAMEL-esque touches.While the music has not actually something trully new to offer, the grandiose parts, the excellent vocals of Mark Colton and the powerful passages are something the listener will be unable to overcome.''Rhetoric'' is based on the best Neo Prog tradition, featuring lots of soaring synthesizers, passionate lyrical adventures, punchy bass and drum lines and well-worked guitar on rhythms and solos.Varty is also responsible for one of the better productions you will find in a Neo Prog album.Smooth, contemporary symphonic orientations and more laid-back waves of atmospheric music are present as well in an album that keeps overall a great balance.Maybe the biggest advantage of new Credo was their ability to finally create deep, extremely dramatic and highly emotional parts through their music, both from a lyrical and an instrumental point of view.

''Rhetoric'' could have stood next to the best Neo Prog releases of the 00's, if somekind of originality was added in the album.Even this way the sensitive, atmospheric and well-crafted arrangements of the band along with the mass of bombastic textures offer a really great listening, if you are into groups like MARILLION, PENDRAGON, ARENA or PALLAS.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

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Send comments to apps79 (BETA) | Report this review (#1020904)
Posted Tuesday, August 20, 2013 | Review Permalink
aapatsos
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Metal and Heavy Prog Teams
3 stars From Wikipedia: ''Rhetoric is the art of discourse, an art that aims to improve the capability of writers or speakers that attempt to inform, persuade, or motivate particular audiences in specific situations.'' Now to that I fully agree, as Credo fully apply this art on their second album, to which I come after listening to "Against Reason". The usual (as Mark Colton would say) subjects of love, war and personal experiences are portrayed through the emotional lyrics and a strong vocal performance.

For those familiar with "Against Reason", "Rhetoric" follows more or less the same pattern, with long, but pretty accessible and far from complex, compositions, dominated by mellow passages with the occasional injection of classic rock attitude. With Marillion (Fish-era) being at the heart of this album as an influence, here we also find a touch of Gilmour's style and some more raw 80's neo-prog in the vein of Pallas. Mike Varty injects some pure keyboard energy but also handles well the more mellow moments. Solid compositions, well-worked and carefully laid out form the spine of "Rhetoric", which shows another common characteristic with its successor: it comes out as rather long as a listening experience, as simple arrangements drag on for more than required, with the fear of sounding repetitive. No bad songwriting on this album, just not enough "creative" weight to support the length that would turn this into a masterpiece.

I find myself enjoying the more up-tempo, elaborate compositions, with the signature keyboard and story-telling of "Skintrade" leading the way, the majestic and passionate "Too Late..." (just listen to that refrain) and the neo-prog trademark "...To the Grave" with the powerful bass line that makes it ideal for playing live. This is what, I think, Credo do better so I will be looking forward to more of these elements in the future releases. 3.5 hearty stars.

Personal thanks go to Mark for providing this CD.

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Send comments to aapatsos (BETA) | Report this review (#1054737)
Posted Sunday, October 06, 2013 | Review Permalink

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