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NEO WAY

Amarok

Crossover Prog


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hdfisch
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Second album by promising Polish band AMAROK with guest appearance of CAMEL bass player Colin Bass unfortunately does not contain much interesting stuff in terms of prog at least in its first half. Tracks 1 to 7 are guitar-based instrumental ones more or less in a mainstream rock vein, quite reminiscent of Mark Knopfler, sometimes of David Gilmour's solo work. Second half of the album consisting of the multi-part title track becomes slightly more attractive to me. The seven parts are presenting instrumental music with some backing vocals very much in an Oldfield vein. Nothing to criticize concerning performance or production, both are brilliant. Just the complete lack of innovation and inspiration keeps me off giving this record more than 2 stars. Let's hope for their next output.

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Send comments to hdfisch (BETA) | Report this review (#78670)
Posted Friday, May 19, 2006 | Review Permalink
ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars This second album from ''Amarok'' is definitively not a great one.

The opening track ''Dajenu'' is setting the pace: what we'll get here is true world music, no more. And actually, it might even be one of the best track available since some poor music has to be endured as well (''Up Hill''). A sub, sub-par ''Dire Straits'' tune with country & Western orientation. Press next of course.

To tell you that one of the best moment here is the short (just short of ninety seconds) ''Two Faces'' says enough about this album.

I am not willing to be destructive but I have to be honest here (as usual in my reviews actually). There are hardly one great or interesting track included on this album. No pop, very little prog, scarce good music to browse you the global picture.

As far as I am concerned, this album has so little to do with the prog scene and I am really surprised to have it featured here. The instrumental ''On The Road'' sounds like a ''Shadow'' tune. But recorded some forty years later.

I wouldn't qualify this album essential for your prog ears. On the contrary: two stars seems a logical end to my ears. Here and there some classic feel are nice, indeed. But ''Fifth Mount'' can't compete with ''Firth of.''. Even if it is my fave little piece here. Some kind of healthy breath in this ocean of average music.

The nadir of this album being of course the poor ''Hope''. A strange title indeed. Believe me: there is not a sight of hope while listening to this sort of music.

So now, you should be ready for the epic of this work. Almost half an hour of music with little coordination. Spacey and interesting music for a while ''Neo Way I'', which is followed by a dreadful funk/house style second part that is really difficult to absorb.

During some very short moment, one might compare this epic track with some Oldfield work like the fourth movement, but to tell you my truth, it is really shy of the work of this giant musician. But this is only how I feel.Still: it is by far one of the best parts of this album.

In all, this ''Neo Way'' is a poor Oldfield attempt to write an epic. And it didn't succeed as far as I'm concerned.

Two stars.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#214531)
Posted Saturday, May 09, 2009 | Review Permalink
kev rowland
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Crossover Team
3 stars This album was kindly sent to me by Artur in Poland, and I have been able to find out virtually nothing about it on the web. I think that this is their second album on Ars Mundi, but I don't think that either band or label have a web site (which is unusual, to say the least). What I can say is that for the most part this is an instrumental album featuring the talents of just one man, Michael Wojtas, who seems to be as happy on guitar as he is on keyboards. Listening to some of the finger picking on "On The Road" it is hard to imagine that this is a prog album at all as it just bounds along without a care in the world.

But, this is an album that has taken influences by bands like Camel and brought them in with other styles to create a prog sound that at times is quite Eastern in its' approach but is always restful and relaxing. The Camel influence is taken further by guest Colin Bass who sings on the three songs that contain vocals. His warm tones add a further depth to the music. It is an album that is very pleasant and just right for the end of the day.

Originally appeared in Feedback #73, Jun 03

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Send comments to kev rowland (BETA) | Report this review (#978682)
Posted Saturday, June 15, 2013 | Review Permalink

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