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FEAR & ANXIETY

Ars Nova (JAP)

Symphonic Prog


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Ars Nova (JAP) Fear & Anxiety album cover
2.90 | 21 ratings | 7 reviews | 5% 5 stars

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Studio Album, released in 1992

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Dark Clouds
2. [dgiha:d]
3. House of Ben
4. Prominence
5. Fata Morgana part 1
6. Fata Magana part 2

Total Time: 31:35

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Keiko Kumagai / all compositions & keyboards
- Kyoko Kanazawa / bass
- Akiko Takahashi / drums

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ARS NOVA (JAP) Fear & Anxiety ratings distribution


2.90
(21 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(5%)
5%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(30%)
30%
Good, but non-essential (55%)
55%
Collectors/fans only (5%)
5%
Poor. Only for completionists (5%)
5%

ARS NOVA (JAP) Fear & Anxiety reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by richardh
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Japanese all girl band influenced by ELP.It's well done and passes the time well enough.Keiko Kumagai shows her ability on keyboards and is a ably supported by a strong rythym section.The music is all instrumental and original enough to stand up in it's own right.I can't go overboard with praise though as I think the lack of variety and tendancy to ramble can get a bit boring after a while.

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Send comments to richardh (BETA) | Report this review (#1094) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, July 18, 2004

Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Being a great fan from ELP, I guess it is normal that I also appreciate Ars Nova (there are amazingly a few more Japanese bands that sound like them - ELP I mean). This is not my prefered Ars Nova album but is still quite interesting for die hard fans. Short intro to start the album : "Dark Clouds" and then it really begins. If you do not look at the cover and just listen ... Try to remember what was all about back to 35 years ago (this review is written in November 2006) it is really a trip back to ancient times. "Jihad" is a powerful number with rythm changes and a very good drumming play. Next comes "House of Ben" which starts in a very scary way (someone seems to die - literally - during the intro but do not worry, this part only lasts for 50 sec.!). It is a complex track with several parts, but the link between them is not obvious and to me it sounds more like small pieces put together that really a one & only number. "Prominence" is jazzy and light : not my cup of tea. "Fata Morgana" is the longest track and closes the album. The same feeling prevails here : good musicianship but little great moments. Overall, an album for completionist : 2 stars. They will do a lot better later on.

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Send comments to ZowieZiggy (BETA) | Report this review (#104694) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Neo Prog Team
3 stars It's hard to believe that three girls can play such kind of music.And the greatest thing of all is that they seem to be virtuosos of their instruments.Someone could say that this album is a tribute to the keyboard driven prog rock of ELP.It contains a lot of hammond organ plays and keyboard/synthesizer lines giving us a taste of what these girls can do.The album is only instrumental and that's the only negative thing,cause at times they sound a little bit monotonous.Generally speaking,a very promising first effort!

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Send comments to apps79 (BETA) | Report this review (#146753) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars The debut album by Japanese lady trio seemed like an EP, actually, because by the time it was released the industry got used to have album with longer duration than an LP could handle. If it was 1970, I could understand it because at that time Gentle Giant and some other classic bands made albums with such short duration. Anyway, that's what I think. As far as this band's concern, this could be their first test the water attempt with the kind of music that some people reckoned that the influence of ELP was very dominant. I don't think it applies fully in this debut album. Yes, the band comprised of three members but it does not mean they played something like Emerson Lake and Palmer. In some segments, probably yes but not all. I can see the influence of Rick Wakeman as well.

It's basically Keiko Kumagai who wrote and composed the pieces in the album and she dominates the music in this album while Kyoko Kanazawa (bass) and Akiko Takahashi (drums ) provide rhythm section. The album kicks off with an ambient Dark Clouds followed by an upbeat and a bit complex composition [dgiha:d]. The music is quite entertaining and energetic with Keiko deliver her layers of keyboard sounds nicely. Akiko's drumwork is quite dynamic as well. House of Ben is probably the one that has great influence by ELP especially on music style, even though it's less complex than typical ELP music. The keyboard solo is stunning although it sounds simple. The inventive breaks through piano sounds are also something that create pleasant listening.

Prominence delivers more aggressive music in terms of tempo and inventive keyboard work as well as flows and changes in styles. Again, you can find ELP influence, performed in simpler chords and notes. You may compare this with Jurgen Fritz of Triumvirat as well. The concluding track Fata Morgana part 1 and 2 make the album being closed in uplifting mood especially with excellent keyboard solo. The song starts mellow with piano work followed by interesting solo which brings the music in excellent flow. I can see the contribution of Kyoko in providing bass lines throughout the song.

As a debut album, this is a good album by the band in their attempt to gauge the market. It's recommended for those who enjoy keyboard-based progressive music, without vocal. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

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Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#157401) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Ars Nova is often Accussed of being an ELP clone band. Even though Ars Nova┤s most significant influence clearly is ELP I think I hear other influences too that help Ars Nova to shape their own sound.

The music is heavily rooted in the seventies symphonic scene, even though it is mostly more modern sounding keyboards being used. UK is abigg influence in the keyboard sound department. The album is instrumental and the themes played by the keybord are mainly classical inspired. Thus the ELP clone rumours.

The musicians are competent and of course, as this is heavily dominated by keyboard, the keyboardist Keiko Kumagai stands out in the soundscape as he is the most spectacular one. The rythm section is also very good though.

I enjoy the album very much even though it┤s not the kind of music I will listen to every day. 3 stars from me to Fear & Anxiety.

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Send comments to UMUR (BETA) | Report this review (#160671) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, February 03, 2008

Review by octopus-4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team
3 stars Not an EL&P clone. Of course when a lineup is made of keyboards, drums and bass it's easy to make this comparison. Instead of ELP, I think they are closer to bands like Niacin (same kind of trio). This debut album has of course some contact points with ELP but no more than a generic influence of classical music. A difference respect to ELP is that Keith Emerson is more influenced by moderrn authors like Stravinskij and in some way Gershwin and Copland. Ars Nova are more "european" in this sense.

The album is good and well played. In Particular, House of Ben, the 3rd track has good moments and varies from a baroque organ, more "a la Wakeman", to jazzy accents in the Niacin style. The only track really close to the ELP style is Prominence, but also this is less ELP influenced than some more acclaimed artists like Par Lindh Project. I also want to remind that many of the bands of the Eastern Europe were strongly influenced by ELP and have never been considered clones, also because they are excellent bands. I mean the Slovakian Collegium Musicum and the Hungarian After Crying.

"Fata Morgana" is a gothic track that could be the soundtrack of a horror b-movie like some good RPI bands, and Emerson himself did in the 70s for the Italian cinema. The cymbal sound that drives the first section of this track reminds to Keith Emerson's "La Chiesa" or to Goblin's "Profondo Rosso". The second of the two is a sort of masterpiece of the genre and Fata Morgana doesn't have anything less, apart a bit more of psychedelia. It doesn't have the orchestral accent typical of ELP in "Works" and could be easily classified into RPI, not only for the Italian title. What lacks is maybe the continuity, because the transitions between the different parts are not always "soft" and at the end it's more like a patchworks of short pieces (like a b-movie horror sountrack can be expected to be).

It's a promising album from a promising group, not enough mature to have four stars, but good enough for 3.

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Send comments to octopus-4 (BETA) | Report this review (#299013) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, September 13, 2010

Latest members reviews

3 stars When I first saw the photos of this trio of ladies I was stunned, it seems that this girls have gained quite a reputation in the prog world only by those photos. But have no doubt music is as freaky and crazy as those photos. This first album is a base for their aggressive instrumental style and ... (read more)

Report this review (#119170) | Posted by Komodo dragon | Saturday, April 21, 2007 | Review Permanlink

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