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The Skys

Crossover Prog

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The Skys Colours of the Desert album cover
3.76 | 53 ratings | 4 reviews | 29% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2011

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Colors of the Desert (7:33)
2. Is this the Way? (3:57)
3. I... He... (4:29)
4. Walking Alone (9:33)
5. When the Western Wind Blows (6:15)
6. Calling Out Your Name (8:21)
7. The Pyramid (7:28)
8. Lethal Kiss (6:39)
9. What If (3:03)

Total Time 57:18

Line-up / Musicians

- Jonas Čiurlionis / guitars, vocals
- Aleksandr Liutvinskij / guitars
- Bozena Buinicka / keyboards, vocals
- Justinas Tamasevičius / bass

Guest musicians:
- Martin 'Frosty' Beedle / drums
- David Kilminster (Roger Waters band) / guitar
- John Young (Bonnie Tyler, Scorpions, Fish) / keyboards
- Snake Davis (Eurythmics, Ray Charles, Paul McCartney) / saxophone
- Tony Spada (Holding Pattern) / guitar
- Anne-Marie Helder (Mostly Autumn, Panic Room) / vocals

Releases information

Digital release (media download) scheduled for March 2, 2011.
CD release scheduled later 2011.

Thanks to phx for the addition
and to J-Man for the last updates
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THE SKYS Colours of the Desert ratings distribution

(53 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(29%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(46%)
Good, but non-essential (21%)
Collectors/fans only (2%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

THE SKYS Colours of the Desert reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by J-Man
3 stars Colours of the Desert is both a unique and impressive effort from leading Lithuanian progressive rock act The Skys. In addition to sporting a decidedly modern take on art rock, the band has also managed to incorporate various styles of jazz, rock, prog, and even touches of pop and soul into their distinct sound. You can definitely spot influences from Pink Floyd, Spock's Beard, and Marillion in their sound, but The Skys manage to retain their unique brand of neo-progressive art rock throughout the full duration of Colours of the Desert. There are also enough solid compositions here to keep most listeners coming back for more, and even though I wouldn't venture to call this an entirely flawless effort, it is a solid outing from this promising band.

While not all songs here are excellent, there are definitely a few great tracks found within this 57 minute album. "Colours of the Desert", "Lethal Kiss", and "Walking Alone" (the longest song on the album) especially stand out as fantastic pieces of music, and these are the three songs that I always remember most fondly when the album ends. "Is This the Way" and "Calling Out Your Name" are a bit too chorus-based for my tastes, even though they both have a few killer aspects. I especially like the former's keyboard playing and the latter's Pink Floyd-ish middle section. The David Gilmour-styled guitar solos throughout the album, matched with female vocal sections and occasional saxophone solos, do tend to give Colours of the Desert a significant Pink Floyd flavoring from time to time. The musicianship is also really impressive across the board, and I especially have to mention that the guitar solos performed throughout the album (by guests and full-time members) are spectacular.

I do think that Colours of the Desert would've benefited from a more professional production and a few more killer tracks, but this is generally a very solid offering of modern progressive rock from The Skys. People who take a liking to art rock that's both original and still accessible should definitely find plenty to love on Colours of the Desert. I'd say 3.5 stars are well-deserved for this impressive album.

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Alone in the desert, one needs hope

The Skys are one of the leading progressive rock bands of Lithuania, active for over 15 years but with a line-up recently revamped. The release of the new and majestic "Colours of the Desert" should go a long way in attracting new fans outside of their homeland. Featuring a wealth of high profile special guests and an ambitious compositional attitude, this is an impressive hour of prog rock. Other reviewers have mentioned everyone from Floyd to Gathering to Renaissance to Eloy in attempts to describe their sound. As the band seemed amused by these assessments in their interview with Torodd, I'll add my own little nonsensical opinion and say the first comparison that popped into my melon was The Alan Parsons Project. So there.

"Colours of the Desert" falls short of being a masterpiece in my opinion, but it is a fantastically enjoyable and eclectic album. Well rounded, enthusiastic, and engaging melodic prog rock is what we get here, with a consistent theme being pursued: "So far this is our most mature album. It is about the journey to desert. At certain stages of our lives we all go to the desert. And desert is all around us - our cities, our daily lives desert may be inside and outside us. Desert is full of temptations, mirages, thoughts and conversations with yourself. However, each time we return from the desert we are different." -Jonas Ciurlionis, interview with PA

The music tries hard to capture the desert theme, in spots sporting various sound effects along with a slight Middle Eastern flavor. Along with the wide variety of lush sounds and light/heavy atmospheres at times it recalls something like Orphaned Land without the metal element. The weapons at their disposal here are many. The mix of male and female vocals is very effective and of good quality. The main male singer has this slightly gravelly Gabriel thing going, and the female voice is quite ethereal, mixed together and with the backing harmonies they can be wonderful. The tracks are packed with soaring guitar/saxophone solos and keyboards of many textures. Love the airy backgrounds, stately piano lines, acoustic guitars, and even a bit of strings. The rhythm section is suitably aggressive when the music demands it, but able to transition smoothly during the more laid-back moments. The all important quality of the songs is mixed but mostly pretty tasty. I like the ones which leaned eclectic more than the ones with repetitive, catchy chorus parts. The tracks which had the most mystery and mood, where you didn't know what would happen next, were the most exciting. As mentioned, the album reminds me of something like "I Robot" but with longer, sassier playing and a bit more oomph. I really like the fact that despite the obvious talent of the players, my attention is always on the beauty of the sound rather than clinical assessments of their technical prowess. In other words, the members are creating engaging sound rather than showing off.

There are so many talented eclectic/crossover prog bands out there now that the challenge for The Skys will be to get people to pay attention. A beautiful work. Between 3-4 stars but I enjoyed this enough to round it up.

Review by kev rowland
4 stars It never ceases to amaze me how music can make the world such a small place. I first heard from Jonas Ciurlionis back in 2006, when I was still in the UK and I reviewed 'Postmodern Game'. Now in 2012 I am reviewing the follow-up 'Colours Of The Desert' which has just been released on CD (it was available as a download last year) and I live in NZ, but Jonas, Bozena, Alexandr and Justines still live in Lithuania where they are recognized as one of that country's top bands. What is also interesting about this release is the quality of the guests who have been involved: Dave Kilminster (I think I have seen Dave in concert on at least three occasions, Roger Waters earlier this year, plus John Wetton and The Nice), John Young (ex-Scorpions, Bonnie Tyler, Greenslade) who also produced the album, Snake Davis (Eurythmics, P.McCartney, Ray Charles, James Brown, etc.), Martin Beedle (Cutting Crew, Sarah Brightman, etc), Tony Spada (Holding Pattern) and Anne Marie Helder (Mostly Autumn, Panic Room). Not bad for a band that have yet to make a huge impact on the wider prog scene.

I do say "yet" as it surely can only be a matter of time. This is a stonking album, with great musicianship and songs throughout. The most obvious comparison is probably with Pink Floyd, but there are also elements of Renaissance, Marillion and others. This is a group that is happy to playing complex intricate prog at speed, or weave a soundscape that beguiles and brings the listener in to its' embrace. The use of female and male lead vocal interplay is particularly effective and overall this is an uplifting piece of work that surely must get them more recognized on the global prog scene. If you enjoy progressive music then you can't afford to miss this as it hits all of the right buttons ? solid from start to finish and a delight to listen to. Not quite 5 stars, but bloody close.

Latest members reviews

3 stars The leading Lithuanian band with this, their second album. I interviewed them earlier this year and they came across as a highly professional band with a vision and a drive to succeed. Something I am sure they will do with this album. Crossover is the right word here. The Skys is perfectly com ... (read more)

Report this review (#557528) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Wednesday, October 26, 2011 | Review Permanlink

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