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Flamborough Head


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Flamborough Head Defining the Legacy album cover
3.64 | 84 ratings | 9 reviews | 20% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
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Studio Album, released in 2001

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Defining the Legacy (11:16)
2. House of Cards (9:16)
3. Garden of Dreams (12:35)
4. Assassin (9:07)
5. Impulse (11:17)
6. Bridge to the Promised Land (6:37)
7. Mind-Sculpture (7:58)

Total Time 68:06

Line-up / Musicians

- Siebe-Rein Schaaf / lead vocals, keyboards
- André Cents / guitar
- Edo Spanninga / keyboards
- Marcel Derix / bass
- Koen Roozen / drums

Releases information

Artwork: Theo Spaay

CD Cyclops ‎- CYCL 096 (2001, Europe)

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FLAMBOROUGH HEAD Defining the Legacy ratings distribution

(84 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(20%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(49%)
Good, but non-essential (23%)
Collectors/fans only (8%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

FLAMBOROUGH HEAD Defining the Legacy reviews

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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Prog-jester
5 stars No reviews yet?Am I the first?

OK...well,this is great GENESIS/MARILLION/ARENA/COLLAGE/etc - inspired CD with great vocals, different moods of music (from folkish tune in "Assassin" to heavy-metal riffs in "Impulse") and excellent musicianship/songwriting abilities.It is a Must for every New Symphonic/Neo Prog fan - FLAMBOROUGH HEAD is a really worthy band.Each long composition filled with various rhytm/signature/structure changes (at least three in every song) and marvellous melodic lines - I bet,you'll sing with the vocalist when you'll hear any tune at the second time!!!Highly underrated,this CD needs more attention,and I recommend it to every Prog devotee.Find and buy it!!!Enjoy!!!

BTW,total time of the album is 68.08

Review by Nightfly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars From time to time I like to dip into my music collection and replay a cd that hasn't been played very often, usually because I wasn't that impressed with it on initial hearing and often can't even remember what it sounded like. This is the case with Flamborough Head's album, Defining the Legacy. I'm pleased to say though that it is much better than I remember it.

My first impression on first and title track is that there's some very nice Keyboard sounds going on here, decent musicianship but not complex. The Drumming is fairly simple in a Nick Mason kind of style but fits the music fine, which is Symphonic/Neo-Prog. The Guitar playing is tasteful and well executed, venturing into quite heavy riffing occasionally with some nice solo's and the Vocals and Bass are more than adequate too. This pretty much continues throughout the album with three of the tracks clocking in at over 11 minutes, which as it happens are the best.

Listening again I'm not really sure why the strengths of this cd seemed to pass me by when I first bought it but I'm glad I gave it another chance and I've enjoyed it enough to want to investigate further into their catalogue. Fans of Arena and early Marillion might want to check them out.

Review by Tarcisio Moura
4 stars Flamborough headīs second CD is definitly more complex, bold and symphonic then the first. It is also a bit less melodic and accessible too. Still, the music is similar: beautiful, captivating and emotional. Tasteful arrangements and great overall musicanship round up a fine package where you enjoy the CD from start to finish. Singer Sieber-Rein Schaaf does a great job, he sings with passion and conviction. There is still hints of Marillion, notably on the keyboards, but their sound is quite their own, which is not small feat for a Neo prog act. Here is a rare case of a group that has as much talent in songwriting as they have musical skills. There are also no ego battles or pointless instrumental noodlings. Itīs a team work where everything is used for the music itself.

I specially liked the guitar parts: some heavy riffing here and there, but always expressive and emotional. The group succeess in avoinding many clichęs, finding some very interesting harmonic solutions without sacrifying melody or sounding too awkward. Itīs the kind of CD that grows on each new listening. It seems simple at first but that impression is a bit deceptive. Again it brings in mind IQ, who has more complexity than it sounds initially. All the tracks are long but you wonīt notice, since the music is so good they seem to be very short, really. Even the almost 8 minuto long instrumental last track is very good. simply saying, there are no fillers in a 68 minute CD. Artwork, as with the first, is also impressive.

If you like melodic prog in the vein of Marillion, IQ and Clepsydra (but again more complex and less melodic than those), this is a must have. Holland surely has one of the best neo/symphonic acts noawadays. Rating: 4 strong stars..Highly recommended!

Review by ZowieZiggy
3 stars I liked pretty much the first album of this Dutch band. How is it possible for such a small country to produce so many good to great bands? I don't know, but I am jealous. Coming out from this Belgian desert, I can only be respectfull for all their input of to the rock history (not only prog, remember that "Golden Earing" also comes from The Netherlands).

Since there were only a few reviews with comments for this album, I read the one of "Prog Jester" and I like very much his definition to describe the music displayed in this album : "New Symphonic". This is a great idea to differentiate the neo-prog genre with such offering. Because, definitely "Flamborough Head" is more involved in the symphonic genre IMHHO.

Of course, they are influenced by "Genesis", but not to a clone status. Compositions are rather long and well developped. Musicianship is quite high, vocals adequate and I like very much Andre Cents's guitar style.

The opener and title track ("Defining The Legacy") is really strong, bombastic and full of lyricism. A highlight of this very good album. But all songs are very pleasant. When not really melodic, they will be supported with some great keys like during "House of Cards" in order to ensure that none is going to frustrate the listener.

The long "Garden of Dreams 1920 K" reminds me of the emotional "Grey Lady Down" (I know, I am a bit biased by this band). Same passionate vocals, the guitar talks to my heart and the overall keyboards play is just gorgeous. It is my favourite song of this album. Almost classical vocals/piano parts combined with the finest symphonic music is quiete an achievement. Some harder tones during the last third of the song will add some "Arena" aspects which I am far to dislike. Vocals are the centre part of this beautiful song. Passion, passion, passion...

Some songs are weaker on this album and prevent it to be as good as their debut. The heavy and uninspired "Assassin" is a good example (but a below average song). It could have been avoided since this is an ultra-long album (clocking at almost seventy minutes).

A song as "Impulse" will also please all the "Arena" fans. Hard and mighty as "Arena" can be. It even holds some heavy metal riffs (but not too much). I admit that this song has little to do with the symph genre. Fully neo-prog as labelled on PA. Just listen to these Banks vintage keys...A good number though.

Same "Grey Lady Down" sound for "Bridge to the Promised Land" as far as the sweet vocals are concerned. It holds a bit too much orchestrations to my taste but these will be balanced with a great closing guitar break.

As I have said, this album is not as strong as their debut one. Still an interesting one : three stars.

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Flamborough Head is quite consistent in the kind of music they play so that it would not confuse their fans. With the same line-up as "Unspoken Whisper" and typically similar music style, i.e. mellow neo progressive, this album stirs my emotion stronger than the previous album. It's probably the music has more soul in it, at lest the singer sings with varied energies - for ups and downs. The guitar is more determined in taking the picks at the right time signature. Take example the opening track "Defining The Legacy" (11:15) which has stunning Floydian guitar work combined with symphonic nuance through the multi-layered keyboard at background. Even though the song moves in typical mellow neo prog vein but the balanced ups and downs makes it delicate to enjoy.

It flows nicely with another mellow "House Of Cards" (9:16) through long sustain keyboard work at opening part augmented with guitar. The break with piano touch combined with guitar riffs and soaring organ make it beautiful, musically. Well. I recommend you to play the music LOUD so that you can get great soundscape and subtleties of the music. I bet most people who claim themselves as neo prog fans would love this song. The melody is quite catchy especially combined with nice piano work.

I guess it's an accident that the title is the same with the Flower Kings' "Garden Of Dreams" (12:35) which brings the music in higher tone with its faster tempo music blended nicely with pulsating keyboard work and great guitar. And the next track title is the same with Marillion's "Assassin" (9:07) but the music style is totally different. It starts with a sound of clavinet followed with voice line using PA system. "Impulse" (11:17) has a richer composition and more energy and drive. The remaining two tracks " Bridge To The Promised Land" (6:37) and "Mind-sculpture" (7:58) are all keyboard-drenched compositions which have nice melody and flow.

Overall, this is another good album Dutch neo progressive band with stunning keyboard solo as well as guitar solo. Fans of neo progressive music would love this album. I'd rather enjoying bands with clear direction like Flamborough Head than latest album of Marillion "Somewhere Else" which, I think, is misdirected. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Review by Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars So review of their previous, right after their next. I'm talking about "One For the Crow". It's still quite symphonic (I'm afraid I'll stick with this term, normal neo-prog, like Marillion, Arena is different, so perhaps neo symphonic). Average length of tracks here is about 9-10 minutes, Flamborough Head really can handle longer compositions. Funny thing is that instead (for example) new "The Muse" album, where there is melody creek, which follows path that you want, or at least expect it to follow (but we all do know that these two melodic records has not much in common, don't we ?), here, the situation is different. You, as the listener is treated well, with respect, but you can't predict, where will music go. That's fine I suppose, because musical experience is bigger. Even I have to admit that synths can remind true neo at times. It's difficult to say. As I saw, Gatot named is with quite interesting term, "mellow neo prog", so if mellow is meant as something similar to symphonic then I agree, while some songs are certainly Arena-like, Assassin for example. Vocals are much more aggressive than in "One for...", because of style of singer. Anyway, woman is supposed to have more tender voice, but that's fine. I personally don't like change in vocal post, because guitar style can be emulated, drums, synths, but voice, it's the most unique thing. It's direct human approach, so it can stir the waters.

4(+) for somehow worse than "One For the Crow".

Review by Mellotron Storm
3 stars 3.5 stars.This is darn close to 4 stars but I just can't in good conscience give it that rating because 3.5 is the true rating in my opinion. Better than the debut and much better than the followup, then things change lineup-wise for the fourth album but we'll get to that album at a later time. Lots to like about this record.They increased the creativity and passion and there are some amazing passages here.

"Defining The Legacy" opens with piano as sampled mellotron and synths come in with soft vocals. Flute too then acoustic guitar.Things pick up when the pulsating organ arrives 3 1/2 minutes in then it kicks in at 5 minutes.This is good.Piano as it settles back then it gets fuller again as contrasts continue. Vocals are back before 7 1/2 minutes and we get a long guitar solo a minute later. "House Of Cards" is led by synths and drums then some heaviness starts to come and go and the tempo picks up. A calm after 2 minutes and reserved vocals arrive 3 minutes in.Tasteful guitar after 4 minutes and when it stops the vocals return. "Garden Of Dreams" is my favourite. A nice uptempo start with lots of keyboards before we get a calm.Vocals follow then it picks back up as synths then guitar join in. A calm with vocals, piano and synths 6 1/2 minutes in then it picks up again. A change a minute later as theatrical vocals and heaviness take over. It does lighten later.Great tune.

"Assassin" opens with mellotron as urgent almost spoken vocals arrive.Regular vocals follow after a minute. It kicks in at 2 minutes. Nice. It settles with reserved vocals 3 1/2 minutes in then it turns heavy with organ 5 minutes in.The vocals get quite theatrical after 7 minutes. Love the brief guitar before 8 minutes. "Impulse" has a good instrumental intro that goes on until after 3 minutes then these angry vocals arrive with a heavy sound. It does settle back but it's still emotional.The guitar is great 6 1/2 minutes in. "Bridge To The Promised Land" has a very classical feel to it with strings. Reserved vocals after 2 minutes then it turns more powerful. It settles back and we get some soaring guitar after 5 minutes.Surprisingly it ends with applause.This song was live ? "Mind-Sculpture" opens with rain and thunder then the synths, drums and bass take over, guitar after 2 minutes. An excellent closing instrumental.

If your into Neo-Prog please check this album out because it's a keeper.

Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The good critics regarding Flamborough Head's debut and the satisfying response at the upcoming gigs filled the band with confidence and helped them move on to the recording process of a new album at the end of the 90's.This sophomore effort would be entitled ''Defining the legacy'' with lyrics written around an autobiographical story of singer Siebe Rein Schaaf.The album was released in 2000 again on Cyclops.

Over an hour of Neo/Symphonic grandeur split in seven tracks is the result of this effort.The first couple of them are alternating between modern MARILION-esque NeoSymphonic Rock,much driven by the synths and organs of Edo Spanninga, and pastoral progressive rock with obvious GENESIS vibes and great flute work, with a splendid result.But soon the style will obtain a heavier and rockier tune,not far from what ARENA had been creating around the time.Guitars become heavier,the tracks are filled with flashy synthesizers and bombastic atmospheres,melody is always present though and even Schaaf's voice has an angrier approach in general.Still, and despite a couple of Hard Rock-ing embarasing moments, the sound continues to be rich and diverse with some superb instrumental passages and tons of shifting tempos.What the listener faces at the end is an evident development to the band's sound compared to their debut and a qualitive increase regarding the compositions,which are now tighter and even more memorable.

What this group of musicians achieved with ''Defining the Legacy'' is to establish themselves as one of the top Neo/Symphonic Prog bands of the millenium,setting ever higher standards for their followers for the upcoming works.Highly recommended.

Review by Warthur
3 stars Flamborough Head's second album delivers the neo-prog goods: tight compositions, extended instrumental sections which really show off the band's talent, and a hard-edged update of the Marillion/IQ style which takes on board some of the darker touches popularised by the likes of Arena.

Of course, there's no shortage of bands which offer a Genesis/Marillion/IQ-inspired sound, but Flamborough Head come across as having a genuine understanding of and appreciation for both the compositional approaches of their major neo-prog influences and that of the 70s bands who inspired the early neo-prog scene in the first place.

At the same time, Siebe-Rein Schaaf's vocals are rather prominent and don't quite feel up to scratch, Schaaf perhaps not sounding as confident as he could singing in English. This would be the last album to feature Schaaf, and he certainly makes his presence felt, though at points this is overbearing and to the detriment of the album.

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