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Karnataka The Storm album cover
3.43 | 54 ratings | 5 reviews | 6% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 2000

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Heaven Can Wait (5:15)
2. Dreamer (3:39)
3. The Journey (8:25)
4. Hay (4:30)
5. Love & Affection (4:42)
6. I Should Have Known (6:13)
7. Everything Must Change (5:29)
8. Shine (4:48)
9. Writing On The Wall (5:21)
10. The Storm (8:48)

Total Time: 55:10

Line-up / Musicians

- Rachel Jones / vocals
- Paul Davies / guitars
- Jonathan Edwards / keyboards
- Ian Jones / bass, acoustic guitar, bodhrán, sampler
- Gavin Griffiths / drums, percussion

- Steve Simmons / alto & tenor saxophones (4)
- Peter Davies / Scottish small pipes (10)
- Jenny Hooker / recorder (10)
- Steve Evans / programming (2,3)

Releases information

CD Immrama Records ‎- KTK CD002 (2000, UK)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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KARNATAKA The Storm ratings distribution

(54 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(6%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(33%)
Good, but non-essential (54%)
Collectors/fans only (6%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

KARNATAKA The Storm reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by ZowieZiggy

I was rather blown away with their debut release : really impressed by the wonderful vocal harmonies, their great soft-prog with excellent guitar work. I was also totally charmed by the magnificent voice of Rachel. Their music is totally "Mostly Autumn" oriented and the same feeling prevails on this album. But it is not as systematic as on their debut album.

This album is maybe a bit more personal in the sense that they don't try to use the same type of song construction all the way through any longer. Meaning a first half featuring vocals while the second part would almost exclusively feature a great guitar solo. Ususally Josh (guitar player from "MA") or Gilmour oriented (since David is definitely the reference for both bands).

There are several excellent songs on this album again : "Heaven Can Wait" which is a highlight but the brilliance of their debut album is only to be featured too scarcely. Actually this album is folkier than their first release. But Rachel always sound so sweet, so wonderful...

Song format is also shorter now, and more ballad oriented like "I Should Have Known" or "Writing On The Wall" which gets us back to a classic structure (great guitar solo at the end). Both are enjoyable. The title track is the longest song from this album. It is also one of the best (with "Heaven..."). Classic song development for the band. Very efficient and superbly performed.

This album is not so catchy as their first one (but "Karnataka" was truely great and difficult to match). Still a good album. Three stars.

Review by ClemofNazareth
3 stars The biggest problem with Karnataka is that they sound just too darn much like Mostly Autumn. That pretty much sums it up for this album (as well as their others). Over the three Karnataka records it's almost as if you can observe the band morphing into a Mostly Autumn clone, from Rachel Jones' vocals right down to Paul Davies' guitar. That's the bad news.

The good news of course is that Mostly Autumn is a pretty decent band. That makes these guys a highly derivative version of a pretty decent band. Unfortunately that doesn’t necessarily equate to being a good band in their own right.

If there’s one track where these guys show a little bit of originality its “The Journey”, a nearly nine-minute rambling tune that manages to avoid the wailing and decadent screaming guitar forays that Mostly Autumn launches into at every opportunity. This one is a lot more restrained than that, and as a result the track makes for a pretty decent, folksy version of modern progressive music while still keeping some of the commercial appeal the band is clearly seeking to capitalize on as best they can.

I can’t say as much for the rest of the album, which is largely unvaried and largely forgettable. I can’t even find another track to highlight, save possibly for “Love & Affection” thanks to some warm and dominating bass work from Ian Jones. Otherwise I can’t distinguish this enough from any of a series of Mostly Autumn recordings to consider it worth spending much more time on.

I’m going to go ahead and mark this record down for three stars, but really were it not for “The Journey” I’d go with two. So pick this one up if you’re a Heather Findlay or Bryan Josh fan; otherwise I recommend moving along and finding something else. Nothing much to see here.


Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
4 stars Karnataka ? The Storm Rachel Jone's crystalline vocals and the sounds of harp, sax and violin ? result: pure magic

I heard of this band due to a lovely photo in a prog magazine. When I first heard the music I was instantly won over by the musical talents and most of all the sweet female lead voice so often missing in prog bands. The album begins with the peaceful serene sounds of an ocean, the waves crashing somnambulant against the beach. The harp (on keyboards) begins to chime and the beautiful crystalline tones of Rachel Jone's vocal prowess bursts through like sun beams through a cloud. The lyrics are thoughtful and reflective about life and hope. The wall of sound is created by the sound of strings and soaring keyboards and the vocal harmonies are like another instrument.

The tracks blend seamlessly together at times and there are some sublime passages of lead guitar solo work and Steve Simmons sensuous sax. One is instantly reminded of Mostly Autumn but Karnataka are original in the way they merge a Celtic flavor with their own inimitable style. It is difficult to choose a highlight as each track adds to the ethereal atmosphere and thematic content. I am however quite drawn to the opening tracks.

All the tracks are well executed in terms of musicianship and vocal talents. The melodies range from soft and lilting to hauntingly ethereal. There are blasts of rock and lengthy instrumental sections featuring screaming guitars. Jones has a distinct way of performing, her vocals are almost nonchalant or effortless, soft, fluid and flowing on each track. She never raises her voice or performs vocal gymnastics, but her range is suited to the shimmering music. It is a very tranquil ambience that is created, a kind of enchanting dreamscape with melancholy moments though it is not depressing music. On the contrary the sound is uplifting, rising in crescendos from piano to forte.

Interestingly enough Jones became Cohen and has traversed into heavier territory recently with her new group The Reasoning, but this Karnataka album showcases Jones/Cohen at her most effective. The Storm is the best of the 3 Karnataka albums followed by Delicate Flame of Desire. I highly recommend this album. Female fronted prog at its best along with Mostly Autumn. A 4 star triumph.

Latest members reviews

5 stars It was simply love at first listening. I've heard similar (and maybe better) things, but nothing compares to THIS. Don't care 'bout me, I like this slower piece, but it doesn't mean I'm not rocking prog Peacefrog. (Prog, not frog, I think you know it.) And which song got me down ? Well, it's L ... (read more)

Report this review (#269282) | Posted by Colourful | Tuesday, March 2, 2010 | Review Permanlink

3 stars I liked very much their first prog folk album in the line of Mostly Autumn. But in this one their change radically their style from prog folk to ambient pop as Enya and October Project. They are very few bands in the style and as good as the prog folk band Mostly Autumn and is a pity that ... (read more)

Report this review (#163361) | Posted by robbob | Friday, March 7, 2008 | Review Permanlink

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