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CLASSIC ROCK PRESENTS: PROGNOSIS 17

Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations)

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Various Artists (Concept albums & Themed compilations) Classic Rock presents: Prognosis 17 album cover
3.53 | 9 ratings | 2 reviews | 22% 5 stars

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Boxset/Compilation, released in 2011

Songs / Tracks Listing

1 Solstice: Flight
2 Exhibit A: Touch the Stars
3 Earthling Society: Night of the Scarecrow
4 Jon Anderson: New New World
5 Wobbler: La Bealtaine
6 Wolverine: Embrace
7 Amorphis: Three Words
8 Symphony X: The End of the Innocence
9 Graveyard: Hisingen Blues
10 TDW: She's Gone
11 HeKz: Don't Turn Back

Total Time 75:00

Lyrics

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Line-up / Musicians

- Artists as listed

Releases information

Presented with "Classic Rock Presents Prog" magazine, issue 17

Thanks to AtomicCrimsonRush for the addition
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VARIOUS ARTISTS (CONCEPT ALBUMS & THEMED COMPILATIONS) Classic Rock presents: Prognosis 17 ratings distribution


3.53
(9 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(22%)
22%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(22%)
22%
Good, but non-essential (56%)
56%
Collectors/fans only (0%)
0%
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)
0%

VARIOUS ARTISTS (CONCEPT ALBUMS & THEMED COMPILATIONS) Classic Rock presents: Prognosis 17 reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Prognosis 17 begins with a band called SOLSTICE who really remind me of later CARAVAN with the added violin.That comparison ends when the female vocals kick in after a minute. Some vocal harmonies 4 minutes in then the violin retruns. Some angry guitar before 5 minutes to the end. I like this one and would rate it as my fourth favourite.

EXHIBIT A is up next and to my ears they sound like an AOR band, not really a fan. EARTHLING SOCIETY's "Night Of The Scarecrow" is one cool track. Clocking in at around 13 1/2 minutes this is heavy with distant sounding vocals before it changes around 4 minutes with the vocals stopping. Another change before 7 1/2 minutes with strummed guitar then the vocals return. It's heavy again around 9 1/2 minutes.A top three.

Jon Anderson's "New New World" is surprisingly good with strings to start and end it. WOBBLER's "La Bealtaine" is a top three for sure with the mellotron, chunky bass and those vintage seventies sounds.Great track !

WOLVERINE's "Embrace" is pretty good while AMORPHIS offers up some heaviness on an okay track.

"The End Of Innocence" by SYMPHONY X is next and it's my final top three. Just a great sounding tune and quite heavy as you'd expect. Some ripping guitar after 4 minutes. GRAVEYARD is up next and this rocks pretty good. It's something you would here on an FM Classic Rock station except this is new.

TDW's "She's Gone" is different as it goes from technical Metal to Heavy prog. HEZK is heavy with vocals and his voice reminds me of the guy from NOEKK.

This sampler leans more to the heavier side of things and is very much hit and miss. Barely 3 stars.

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Send comments to Mellotron Storm (BETA) | Report this review (#530127) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, September 23, 2011

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Team
4 stars Prognosis 17, is the free CD with Classic Rock presents Prog magazine. This sampler is heavier than the usual samplers.

Solstice's 'Flight' kicks things off and it is great to hear a rocking riff and female vocals, one of my favourite styles of prog. The vocals are crystalline and flat with a hint of vibrato. The twin lead guitars are as good as I have heard reminiscent of Wishbone Ash. I did not like the 'do wah day ah do' section as it sounded like radio stuff but overall the track was a good start. The track is from "Spirit" album. The lead break is excellent on this played over a cool riff with strong percussive rhythms.

Exhibit A is next with 'Touch the Stars' from "Make Mine a Lobster". There are dominant keyboards and resounding guitars. The vocals are well executed by the male vocalist. The real star on this is the guitars and keyboard trade offs. The feel is like Spock's Beard and there are some excellent harmonies. The melody is enhanced by repetitive chorus lines and the lead break is an echoed reverbed passage.

Earthling Society's 'Night of the Scarecrow' is 13 minutes of extreme psychedelic spaceyness taken from "Stations of the Ghost" album. The sound is reminiscent of Black Widow, as the band attest to, and is as dark and esoteric. There is a touch of doom, psych prog and very doomy guitars throughout. The sepulchral voices at the intro signify the darkness of the piece. The guitars are spacey and very much like The Sonics or 13th Floor Elevators psychedelia. The vocals are reverbed as though in an airway hanger. The extreme echo is quite effective but it is virtually impossible to make out the lyrics though it appears to be about an evil night of mayhem. The structure is very loose with drums all over the place and incessant grinding guitars over a droning keyboard effect.It locks into a burbling space effect and crashing drums over bizarre guitar licks. Think Hawkwind meets 60s psychedelic prog and you might be close. I like how this track is completely outside the box compared to others on this sampler, but it takes some patience to get through all 13 minutes.

Jon Anderson is no stranger to me both solo and with Yes and it was nice to hear his song 'New New World' taken from the album "Survival & Other Stories". This is an exclusive to Prog magazine and gives us an insight into what the great man has been doing while Yes have been recording "Fly From Here". Anderson's voice is fine and the music is orchestrally symphonic, with strings and keyboards augmented by steady percussion. There is a heavier feel though with the guitar embellishments. Overlaid harmonies of Anderson's falsetto sound nice speaking out a new world and a new beginning, which may be self prophecy for what Anderson has been through lately. I think if this is any indication of what to expect from the new solo album for Anderson, it should be a real treat.

Wobbler are making an impact in the prog community and here we able to hear 'La Bealtaine' from the "Rites At Dawn" third album. The 5 piece band are from Norway and are influenced by the 70s classic sound clearly. The sound is similar to Yes in many ways and sounded like the previous track. It has a fast tempo keyboard and guitar riff. The high falsetto vocals are very much like Anderson in fact.

Wolverine's 'Embrace' from "Communication Lost" is an orchestral heavy prog track. Sweden have always been a black metal dominated country when it comes to metal, and Wolverine are quite different in this regard, at least on this track. It begins with ambient music and very gentle well sung vocals, crystal clear and emotive; "I fell in a dark and bottomless pit, darkness embraced my whole world". The chorus is lifted up with higher vocals and louder keyboards. The storyteller vocals are a key feature and very pleasant to listen to. The guitars eventually crank up the volume with a delightful lead break and the distortion of rhythms guitars create a downbeat sombre atmosphere. This is one of the highlights of the sampler.

Finnish band Amorphis are next with 'Three Words' from the tenth album "The Beginning of Times". The album tells the tale of legendary mythological hero Vainamoinen. The cruncing metal riffs are like machine gun lasts and they build to concentrated rhythms and then loud chord changes for the chorus. The male vocals are clean and balance the heavy riffs well. The majestic keyboards are royal and reminded me of Rick Wakeman's bombastic approach. The lyrics of sword battles and alchemic sorcery are a little heavy handed like Manowar but are okay. Some heavy death metal vocals are briefly heard before the next chorus.

Symphony X are one of the more well known bands on the sampler and the track 'The End of the Innocence' is taken from "Iconoclast", their eighth studio release. The track is about the dangers of machine technology taking over humanity. The sound is heavy as their master work "Paradise Lost" with great swathes and surging keyboards. The riffs are mechanised and there are some vocals that sound like Blackie Lawless from WASP. This is as heavy as Symphony X gets and it refreshing that they are going for a meatier guitar sound and aggressive vocals without becoming a different band. The keyboards are ever present interceding within the brutal riffing. The lead break is up to the usual excellent standard, screaming along with fret melting dexterity. It fades out as though edited. This is certainly a great track well worth checking out along with the new album.

Graveyard's 'Hisingen Blues' is a meld of spacey metal, jazz and folk with some blues riffs thrown in for good measure. The vocals are very much like a 70s metal band such as Master's Apprentices or the heaviness of 70s legends Deep Purple or Black Sabbath. The eclectic sound is as diverse as the time changes and one never knows where the music will take you to. This title track from their album is heavy with moments that allow it to breathe. I loved the retro feel that would fit comfortably on a 70s metal album. The end with quirky guitar blasts, and guitars as bluesy as Ten Years After or Jimi Hendrix in places, is inspirational. Definitely check this out if you get a chance.

TDW is next with 'She's Gone' taken from "Scrapbook". Tom de Witt is the main instigator of the music that may be compared to Dream Theater on a more experimental level. There is an odd time sig with speed riffing guitars and some dirty distortion. The low vocals are easy to comprehend, with the Dutch accent. The doomy low guitar crunches and double kick speed drumming are fabulous balanced with the laid back vocals. I loved the dark feel of this, and some vocal aggression, which is never overbearing but like Devin Townsend is balanced with some dusted off guitar embellishments. A compelling track from beginning to end.

HeKz are represented by a track from the "Orfeo" EP, 'Don't Turn Back'. It is another long one at 10 minutes and has diversions into many sections, time changes and lengthy instrumental breaks. Iron Maiden is an influence and they are a relatively young band. The lead guitars are well played and layers of keyboards generate a melancholy atmosphere. The intro lead break is outstanding. The vocals are soft and underplayed with a steady beat. The vocals build to a higher register and the beat builds to a heavier tempo. The lead guitars are everpresent and a key feature. At times this one has some strange vocal techniques that could be improved hopefully for subsequent releases. The band has a lot of promise for the future that is certain.

And thus ends a rather heavy prog compilation but one of the best since the magazine's conception. These Comps are designed to introduce newcomers to the bands to their material and hopefully will gain some CD sales as a result. I can say that at least 6 of the artists and their albums will be hunted down by this reviewer as a result of this CD, namely Solstice, Wolverine, Graveyard, Symphony X, TDW, and Jon Anderson. I was pleasantly surprised at how great this is and it reminded me just how excellent modern prog music has become.

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Send comments to AtomicCrimsonRush (BETA) | Report this review (#541218) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, October 04, 2011

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