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Tempus Fugit

Symphonic Prog

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Tempus Fugit Chessboard album cover
3.86 | 87 ratings | 10 reviews | 24% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2008

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Pontos de Fuga :
- Part I (1:12)
- Part II (3:27)
2. Unfair World (7:58)
3. Only to be with You (10:07)
4. The Princess :
- a) My Princess (4:23)
- b) Tears from the Sky (3:20)
5. Chessboard :
- a) The Game of Life (11:03)
- b) The Living (8:27)

Total Time: 49:57

Line-up / Musicians

- André Mello / lead & backing vocals, keyboards
- Henrique Simões / electric & acoustic guitars
- André Ribeiro / bass, acoustic guitar
- Ary Moura / drums

- Mirna Bertling / vocals (5,7,8)
- Fernando Sierpe / vocals (7,8)
- José Roberto Crivanno / guitar (6)
- Pedro Peres / bass (5,6)

Releases information

Artwork: Bernard Design

CD Masque Records ‎- MRCD0708 (2008, Brazil)

Thanks to CCVP; Atkingani for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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TEMPUS FUGIT Chessboard ratings distribution

(87 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(24%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(49%)
Good, but non-essential (21%)
Collectors/fans only (3%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

TEMPUS FUGIT Chessboard reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by erik neuteboom
4 stars

In the second half of the Nineties this Brazilian formation released their debut album Tales From A Forgotten World (1997), an official bootleg live album (1998) and the second effort The Dawn After The Storm (1999) so 3 albums in 3 years but then .... there was a long silence. In Prog Veteran (from Brazil) his review I read that Tempus Fugit performed at the USA Progfest festival in 2000, in Copacabana in 2002 and actually around that time all compositions for new album were ready. But unfortunately it took six years before Tempus Fugit released their third studio album entitled Chessboard in 2008. Was it worth waiting for so many years?

Well, I am delighted about Tempus Fugit their melodic sound (but I prefer native vocals instead of English) on Chessboard: very tastefully arranged and scouting the borders between modern symphonic rock and neo-prog featuring wonderful work on keyboards and guitar and lots of flowing changing climates. My highlights are the lush Vangelis-like synthesizer sound in Pontos de Fuga, many shifting moods, an acoustic guitar solo with a violin-Mellotron sound and exciting guitar solos in The Princess, splendid interplay between fiery guitar and fat sounding keyboards in the alternating Chessboard Part A and a beautiful blend of acoustic guitar and piano and fiery wah-wah drenched guitar and a compelling grand finale with howling guitar and fluent synthesizer flights in the wonderfully build-up in Chessboard Part B.

I am sure this new album will please both the symphomaniacs as the neo-progheads, highly recommended!

Review by Tarcisio Moura
4 stars Very strong and beautiful release from this brazilian symphonic prog band, their best since the excellent debut, Tales From A Forgotten World (1997). Great melodic prog tunes with lots of keyboards and guitars interplaying. The rhythm section is also of high caliber, with bassist André Ribeiro showing great skill and creativity. The only weak spot, as ever, are the vocals. Not that André Mello (who also handles all keyboards) is a bad singer. He is not. In fact his style and timbre reminds me a lot of another of Brazil´s prog legend, Flávio Venturini (of Terço and 14bis fame). But clearly his vocal prowness is nowhere near his and his bandmates instrumental hability. With a stronger and more versatile vocalist this band could reach much higher ground. Other brazilian prog acts like Tarkus and Apocalypse learned that lesson. Tempus Fugit should benefit a lot if follow the same path. Anyway, even if not really the most fitting, Mello´s vocals are nice, and get better when are helped by the addition of Mirna Bertling´s voice on some tracks.

The music of Chessboard is melodic, enthralling, convincing and quite inspired. Henrique Simões shows some great licks on his guitar (The acoustic guitar solo on My Princess is pure beauty), and together with Mello´s keys, they complement each other for some of the best combinations in this style. I really hope those guys don´t take another six years to release a new album. Songs like Unfair World, Tears From The Sky and The Game Of Life are fine prog gems that make the waiting very worthwhile. With no fillers (not even weak tracks) and a good production, this an album that any prog fan should listen to. And enjoy the emotional ride. Four strong stars.

Review by Nightfly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Chessboard is the third album from Tempus Fugit, a Symphonic Prog band from Brazil, but is my introduction to the band. There seems to be a myriad of influences here, from classic seventies symphonic prog - Camel for example to neo prog but down to a modern sounding production, though a little sterile sounding has its feet firmly in the current decade.

Although Chessboard is a very good album it's frustratingly let down by some poor vocals from Andre Mello. Fortunately he makes up for it with some fine keyboard work. In fact the whole band are excellent players and I particularly enjoyed guitarist, Henrique Simoes searing lead work. The music is full sounding and melodic and particularly welcome in view of the afore mentioned weak vocals are plenty of extended instrumental passages.

Although there is much to enjoy in the earlier parts of the album it's the last 2 tracks, The Princess and Chessboard (both divided and subtitled into 2 parts) that they really hit their stride. On My Princess the vocals are helped by the addition of Mirna Birtling, though the vocal melody is a little sugary but it's the second part, Tears From The Sky where guitarist Simoes really gets a chance to shine with an excellent solo.

Title track Chessboard also happens to be the longest track, the 2 parts almost taking it to the 20 minute mark. Birtling helps out on vocals again. The first part, The Game of Life reminds me quite a bit of IQ, melodically, but also because of the overall sound. Andre Ribeiro shines with some dextrous bass playing too, making up a very good rhythm section with drummer Ary Moura. Simoes also gets to shine again on the second part, The Living with some nice acoustic work as well as more excellent lead playing. Chessboard is easily the best track on the album, maintaining my interest throughout with its many changes.

A very good album then worth 3 ½ stars, the weak vocals stopping me from stretching to a 4. Perhaps Tempus Fugit should add a new singer to the line up or failing that they'd make a great instrumental band.

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars The story of this band is quite chaotic, but it is fine to hear them back again after such a long hiatus (almost ten years).

It sounds, though, that time hasn't impacted the music that they play. They stick to this mellow and symphonic style which was brilliantly developed in their debut album. But this is maybe a negative point from this recent release: there are hardly differences between Chessboard and its predecessors.

Early Camel lovers will be delighted to listen this gentle music full of keyboards and fine guitar. Crafted melodies, peaceful vocals: a fine combination for a Saturday afternoon.

The album is quite even all the way through. One will be transported in to the early Genesis days while listening to Only To Be With You and one of the finest piece of music is the magnificent second part of The Princess called Tears From The Sky. The supreme beauty of the guitar solo just leaves me speechless: a wonderful prog moment, really.

If each song would be like this, I would have considered this album for the masterpiece status; but it won't reach the level because these moments are only available for some too briefs minutes. They are mainly mixed with some neo-prog or basic symphonic music (Chessboard).

Don't get me wrong: this is a very pleasant album, but highlights aren't that many. A good album that fully deserves three stars.

Review by Mellotron Storm
4 stars I think TEMPUS FUGIT did themselves proud with this release. It's been 9 years since their last record "The Dawn After The Storm" which is still my favourite from them. The music here is so lush and melodic, and personally I think the vocals fit the music perfectly. Kind of like Gilmour or Waters, neither of which are great singers but would you rather it was someone else singing for FLOYD ? Not me, and the same with TEMPUS FUGIT, I think Andre's warm and reserved style of singing is just right. I have to mention the length of this album as well, because at 50 minutes on the dot it's just right.

Speaking of PINK FLOYD, the intro track "Pontos De Fuga" part I is a synth filled instrumental that is no doubt inspired by that legendary band. Part II sounds even better with the melodic guitar leads and fat bass lines. The synths and guitar take turns leading the way. Another excellent instrumental. "Unfair World" features tasteful guitar melodies as reserved vocals come in with piano. The guitar comes and goes. A fuller sound as the drums arrive. I like his vocals a lot after 7 minutes. "Only To Be With You" is the first time we really hear an uptempo melody. The guitar, piano, bass and synths all shine. Vocals come in after 4 minutes. A pleasant listen but my least favourite track. "My Princess" opens with guest female vocals as the sound slowly builds. It's the chorus though with Andre singing that is so touching. "Tears From The Sky" is an instrumental that begins with some nice relaxing guitar and piano. The guitar grows more passionate until synths take over after 1 1/2 minutes. The guitar comes back before 2 1/2 minutes with pure emotion. Incredible.

"The Game Of Life" features lots of synths and some prominant guitar early before a calm with piano comes in before 3 minutes. Beautiful section as some guest male vocals arrive as well. Very melodic and pleasant. Female vocals help out. The guitar lights it up before 7 1/2 minutes with organ in tow. Nice. The vocals return with more feeling as the bass throbs and guitar rips it up. The organ is back ! This is great. "The Leaving" opens softly with piano and reserved vocals. Soaring guitar a minute in. After 2 minutes we get an extended instrumental section of piano, bass and acoustic guitar. Very enjoyable to say the least. Electric guitar joins in after 4 1/2 minutes, the bass is deep and prominant. Just a pleasure to listen to this song. The guitar reminds me of Latimer 7 minutes in and then it starts to cry out. The tempo picks up near the end with lots of synths.

I feel this is barely a 4 star album, but it's still worth 4 stars.

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Tempus Fugit is one of my favorite prog band because they choose to venerate our beloved symphonic genre with their unique Brazilian temperament in creating "happy" prog as opposed to the "Strum & Drang" that most progheads pray to infuse in their complex musical minds. The tropical spirit never goes below the even slight despondence, preferring to breeze with unabashed delight, perhaps very melancholic but never sad. That's pretty refreshing especially when there are many multi-genre aficionados on our site who go from one style to another extreme, a swerve into further prog horizons, looking for a new buzz. Hence, a seasoned collector and prog purist like my revered sinkadotentree has commented on the simply splendid previous Tempus masterpiece "Dawn After the Storm" , heaping copious serenades on the strength of an album of drop dead gorgeous melodies, scintillating solos and overall bliss, with an omnipresent sense of leisurely smiles and understanding glances. Certainly in my humble view, one of the best recent prog records EVER. I am confident in stating that many proggers are truly missing out on a recording that inexorably will PLEASE and seduce them into their sexy-prog world. It also happens to be excellent music while flirting with some lovely creature, blaring gently in the background for quite a few romantic dinners "a deux" as I have! Get's you in the moooooood! So the avidly awaited follow-up after a too long stretch of silence was not going to get away with impunity and taking over first place! Hard pressed, they evidently understood that it would even more honorable to, while keeping many of the band's obvious attributes (no, not talking about the Love Beach artwork!), just "progress" into another realm, certainly brainier and more esthetically symphonic in structure. So the chessboard becomes the inspiration and it doesn't get more challenging genius than that game, so the boys really kick it up. The two-part "Pontos de Fuga" slings the proceedings into electric overdrive, with slithering massed synths boldly establishing the onslaught, guitarist extraordinaire Henrique Simoes lights up like a manic blast of flame-thrower, spewing harsh rhythmics and supple, ultra-agile melodic leads, while the nimble bass of Andre Ribeiro bounces around in strict dementia and the forceful drums splash the arrangement with unrestrained enthusiasm and effort. "Unfair World" introduces Andre Mello's oft criticized vocals but his timbre and fragility is what makes the beauty of the melodies function with such grace and resplendence. And what a whopping tune this is, loaded with melancholia and supreme elegance, the hallmark of the previous "Dawn After the Storm" jewel. Simoes signs a resourceful solo with his unique tone, not really Latimer, Hackett or Gilmour (as some have misguidedly suggested), a lyrical virtuoso with a burning resonance fueled by a canny devotion to "feeling". This is a tremendous track that will please you! "Only to be With You" is unfortunately a bit pedantic but has some incredible bass tremors, some jazzier keyboard splurges and a series of twist and turns that border on experimental (at least for them). A windswept synth solo is also exhilarating, an okay vocal passage but this track just doesn't do it for me, even though the instrumental parts are quite impressive, Simoes again displaying his craft. The two-part "The Princess" has a beautiful main chorus on which Mello sings brilliantly, a simple vulnerability exudes from the spirit of this appealing tune, a rare acoustic guitar solo is one of the finest ever, seeping overt Brazilian traditions in serenade ("Let me dry your tears away" ), while the second segment highlights a scorching, bombastic almost desperate axe lead that leaps out and explodes with incredible pain and agony, rippling like a seismic fault and soaring imperially. Wow, what a mother! If anyone has doubts, pheew! The title cut is also a two-seater, with a torrential symphonic onslaught, growling slashes of guitar and howling keyboard fanfare, slowly shaping the masterful main theme, a self-assured musical statement when the shining lead torturously overtakes it and the clouds have parted, electric piano and a dreamy vocal, elastic bass and a groovy synth-led journey begins. The mood then dives into a massive prog slugfest, with sensational chops by all four conspirators. While a perfectly enjoyable album, it cannot fairly compare to their masterwork's monumental collection of classics and perhaps as I mentioned , it is a good thing , giving even more class to the entire Tempus Fugit catalog as the first album "Tales of a Forgotten World" is also quite a stunner. Chessboard will do nicely thank you, with great artwork to boot. Sink was right again !4 carioca pawns.
Review by kenethlevine
4 stars While the symphonic meets neo sound of TEMPUS FUGIT remains largely intact over 10 years after their 1997 debut, several significant alterations can be discerned. It's clearly not a group that wants to sit still, but at the same time they seem to have a consistent vision of the influence they wish to exert on the progressive scene.

Bassist André Ribeiro adds a new dimension, crooning expressive lines like a sultry sax player in a mildly jazzy Camel style. Vocalist André Mello has become more confident, and while he'll not ever be a PETER GABRIEL or a PETER HAMMILL, I would argue that the group would suffer under such a powerful singer, and Mello's voice is more simpatico with the group's wistful and mellow orientation. Perhaps because of his improvement, this is a more vocal oriented album, with 5 of the 8 tracks containing sung parts - this is achieved without dulling the band's instrumental sheen in the slightest and without resorting to conventional song structures. The other change I note is an ever so slightly more aggressive edge , nothing to convert metal fanatics or scare away us peaceniks, but more in the manner of several groups that rose to prominence in the earlier part of the 2000s, chiefly CLEPSYDRA and SATELLITE. The vocal parts tend to be more mellow, but not exclusively

All the tracks here are very good, with perhaps the best being in the middle. "Unfair World" shifts from a languid symphonic ballad to more of a neo progger with ease. "Only to be with You's opening 3 minutes may well be the highlight of the album especially if you can't get enough early instrumental CAMEL, while the rest is more vocal oriented in the vein of early SEBASTIEN HARDIE. Then there is the fairy tale like purity of "The Princess", TEMPUS FUGIT's nearest approximation to a hit, and it would be deserving. The second part of the track is a masterful lead guitar led work that positions Henrique Simões somewhere on the path to MIREK GIL via JOHN LEES. Heaven!

The closing and title tracks are also strong, perhaps only slightly less riveting even though I hear some tribute to fellow romantic Brazilians SAGRADO and 14 BIS in Mello's crooning on the closer, as well as some surprisingly dramatic vocal passages toward the end, that recall early GENESIS and KYRIE ELEISON.

I know that TEMPUS FUGIT are going places with their sound, and would like to think the same for their recognition but I know better. Their moves may not result in a commercial windfall, but I also see little danger of a stalemate.

Review by Warthur
5 stars It's rather ironic that a band whose name means "time flies" should have nearly a decade pass between their second and third albums. Still, Chessboard proves to be more than worth the wait. An exuberant album in an IQ-inspired neo-prog mode, it might not be the most original thing out there, but as with the band's excellent debut the group more than make up for this with soaring performances and great compositions which grab the listener hard and don't let go until the last chord has sounded. With the emphasis so firmly on the instrumental sections, the portions with vocals are essentially punctuation, though vocals have never been the band's strong point so this is very much for the best.

Latest members reviews

3 stars The third and so far final Tempus Fugit albums offers some really nice symphonic prog. Tempus Fugit from Brazil has got a reputation as one of the better new generation symphonic prog bands from South America. On this album, they are taking up the legacy left from both the great South American ... (read more)

Report this review (#458601) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Thursday, June 9, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Actually a ****1/2 almost perfect cd. Hello prog heads all around ! I´m a 44 years old prog fan since the 15. From the 70´s vinyl era till nowadays mp3, I always loved prog music. Tempus Fugit is a band from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil with a new album "Chessboard". They were invited and played at ... (read more)

Report this review (#178693) | Posted by Prog_Veteran | Saturday, August 2, 2008 | Review Permanlink

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