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Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) - Progday '98 CD (album) cover


Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)

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Mellotron Storm
4 stars It was one hot weekend for ProgDay 98 at Storybook Farm in North Carolina. And while shade was at a premium, the music made it all worthwhile. Peter Renfro and his supporters including Rob LaDuca did it again and i'm sure they all look back with a great deal of satisfaction at this particular festival.The photos and info in the liner notes helps one feel like they were a part of this event. And I love the cover art too. I've enjoyed this double disc so much this past week and I just want to share some thoughts.

CRUCIBLE is up first and what I found valuable about their performance was hearing the over 20 minute "An Imp's Tale" from the long out of print "Tall Tales". Especially since I don't own that recording.The song has a pleasant mood and I like the vocalist. Just a great tune overall and they also cover GENESIS' "Down And Out" and they do a fantastic job. SOUNDSCAPE is up next who I hadn't heard of before.They do one track here and they're very much in the Prog-Metal style. I really enjoy the song, vocals and guitar. Lots of energy and they put on a show. DISCIPLINE is next with two tracks including "Mickey Mouse Man" but for me the highlight of this whole recording is their over 18 minute "Before The Storm-Blueprint" track.This is almost like having a religious experience because it's so unbelieveable ! I'm just not worthy to hear such incredible music. THE FLOWER KINGS follow that up with an over 20 minute version of "Stardust We Are" and they do themselves proud with the whole band performing at such a high level as usual.

Disc two begins with a band I wasn't familiar with called ALASKA. A two piece (wouldn't have known that) and they use lots of samples.They have a YES flavour and they did a good job. A PIEDI NUDI gets the most air time on this recording and for good reason. Five tracks of emotion along with tempo and mood shifts galore.These Italians are a favourite of mine and they impress big time. French horn, bass, drums, guitar and vocals are all so good. Incredible ! PAR LINDH PROJECT ends the album with two tracks including "Cathedral" with female vocals and Par's amazing organ work. His whole band is outstanding though.

I highly recommend this historic recording from a festival which continues to this day as the longest running Prog festival in the USA. Catch it if you can ! And defintely buy this double disc recording, it's a keeper.

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Posted Sunday, May 8, 2011 | Review Permalink


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