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Life Line Project

Symphonic Prog

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Life Line Project The Journey album cover
3.98 | 76 ratings | 6 reviews | 27% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2011

Songs / Tracks Listing

CD 1 "Journey To The Heart Of Your Mind"
1. Blank Page (7:19)
2. The Journey Begins (4:57)
3. Join Us ! (3:49)
4. Doubt (1:29)
5. Fight The World (5:17)
6. Longing For My Childhood (4:46)
7. Interlude "Turn The Page" (0:55)
8. Bright Spots (5:17)
9. Envy (1:33)
10. Interlude "Dark Page" (1:00)
11. Miss Fortune (3:45)
12. Interlude "Forgotten Page" (1:30)
13. The King Of Make-Believe (5:16)
14. Free ! (3:07)
15. Credo (5:01)
16. The Last Page (5:07)

Total Time 60:17

CD 2 "The Narrow Path"
1. Turn The Key (5:35)
2. Miniature 8 "La Mélancolie" (2:32)
3. The Narrow Path (11:57)
4. Monkey Business (2:56)
5. Happiness Theme (3:56)
6. Collage '11 (3:08)
7. Miniature 6 "La Flegmatique" (2:24)
8. Does It Help ? (7:34)
9. The French Wrench (4:22)

Total Time 44:46

Line-up / Musicians

- Marion Brinkman-Stroetinga - lead & harmony vocals
- Maruschka Kartosonto - lead & harmony vocals
- Peter van der Stel - lead & harmony vocals (King Of Make-Believe)
- Liset Dullaart - lead & harmony vocals (Miss Fortune)
- Anja Sides-Dirkzwager - lead vocals (Does It Help?)
- Johan van der Stel - money making yuppie (Join Us)
- Maarten Mol - mad preacher (Join Us)
- Elsa de Beer - flute & Wendy the Brainless Rapper (Join Us)
- Dineke Visser - oboe
- Anneke Verhage - clarinet
- Lisette Harms - clarinet (Forgotten Page)
- Ada Bienfait - bassoon
- Jody van der Gijze - electric & acoustic guitars, lots of harmony vocals
& additional lead vocals
- Iris Sagan - bass guitar, harmony vocals & the socialist (Join Us)
- Erik de Beer - acoustic & electric piano's, Moogs, Hammond organ, pipe organ,
harpsichord, synthesizers, guitars, mandolin, lute, chitarrone, baroque guitar,
acoustic bass guitar, lead & harmony vocals

Releases information

2CD LLR 21 063 (2011)

Thanks to Ivan_Melgar_M for the addition
and to NotAProghead for the last updates
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LIFE LINE PROJECT The Journey ratings distribution

(76 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(27%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(31%)
Good, but non-essential (19%)
Collectors/fans only (14%)
Poor. Only for completionists (10%)

LIFE LINE PROJECT The Journey reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Prog Specialist
4 stars Last week when the postman rang my bell, I knew it was the latest LIFE LINE PROJECT album that "Erik de Beer" told me he was sending, but when I opened it, found it was a double CD with a lot of nice surprises, like offering us the chance to listen the voices of the three female vocalists (Marion Brinkman-Stroetinga, Maruschka Kartosonto and Anja Sides-Dirkzwager )who have formed part of the band's history.

After listening the double CD, is clear that we are talking about two excellent albums released in one package that starts with "Journey to the Heart of Your Mind", a mixture of concept album and multi part epic.

Despite I don't like the name of the epic (well, we are here to judge the music not the name) we are talking about an excellent 60 minutes song divided in 16 parts:

"Blank Page" is a long and frenetic intro for the album that has fantastic keyboard passages with Erik at his best, a magnificent way of opening the album. Pay special attention to the Baroque organ solo around the third minute followed by a Medieval Harpsichord and flute break, it's breathtaking.

"The Journey Begins" is a nice and melodic song where the sweet voice of Marion Brinkman Stroetinga fuses perfectly with the dreamy and mysterious atmosphere only interrupted by synth explosions.

"Join Us" is a hit and miss track, the keyboard and instrumental sections are delightful (remind me a bit of Rick Wakeman, with fantastic arrangements sadly the vocals are not in the level, in my opinion too operatic and a bit forced. Luckily it's quite short and followed by the extremely beautiful "Doubt", a musical piece that works as a nice melodic interlude with a heartbreaking Spanish guitar and Mellotron sections.

After the calm, usually comes the storm, and that's what happens with "Fight the World", a frantic track that has everything that Progheads like me love so much, as dramatic changes, lush keyboards and restless dynamic, and as we can expect, after the storm the calm returns with the melodic "Longing for my Childhood" where Dineke Viseer offers us a beautiful oboe performance.

Surrounded by two interludes ("Turn The Page" and "Dark Page") the keyboard oriented tracks "Bright Spots" and ""Envy" keep the level of the album at the peak, even when the vocals in "Envy" are not in the level of the music.

The medieval "Miss Fortune" is one of my favorite tracks despite the extremely theatric dialogue by "Liset Dulaart" and a second vocalist that I'm unable to identify, not my cup of tea, but even the most reputed conceptual albums like "The Lamb Lies down on Broadway", have to sacrifice some vocals to maintain the plot, after "Miss Fortune" comes the wonderful Interlude "Forgotten Page" with a very carefully elaborate medieval atmosphere.

in the following two tracks ("The King Of Make-Believe" and "Free !"), LIFE LINE PROJECT hits us with everything they have giving no time to breath, but for the grand finale comes the beautiful "Credo" and it's fantastic vocal work plus excellent electric guitar solo.

Erik De Beer & Company close CD I with "The Last Page" one of the most explosive and brilliant songs that I heard by this excellent Dutch band.

But, this is far from being the end, because It's time to listen CD II called "The Narrow Path" that presents 9 separate tracks that cover all the styles and moods that the LIFE LINE PROJECT has offered us during their relatively short but prolific career.

We can find from Mellotron based tracks to musical pieces performed on grand piano, oboe, flute etc, starting with the mysterious "Turn the Key", the Neo Classical " Miniature 8 La Mélancolie" and ending with the Moog based "The French Wrench", but not forgetting the ever changing epic "The Narrow Path" that has everything a Symphonic fan would love.

Well, if I had to choose between quality and quantity, I'd always go with the first one, but if we find an album with more than 100 minutes of good music, we know we hit the jack pot, so even when I still believe that "Distorted Memories" is the best LIFE LINE PROJECT release, I can't rate The Journey with less than 4 stars.

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Lifeline Project flew into my radar screen thanks to reading positive reviews on PA and the usual preparatory research on the Net. It sounded like something I would like and I took the plunge. I am happy to say that it was both a wise move and a smart investment as "the Journey" contains some astounding moments, all along its majestic symphonic course. The main man here is keyboardist Erik De Beer, a modern Rick Van der Linden (RIP) and the double CD is divided into 2 suites, disc One being "Journey to the Heart of your Mind" and Two "The Narrow Path". Now, 2 Cd albums that clock in over 100 minutes mean that there will be some "soft" areas that may not appeal to all but so be it.

CD1- "Blank Page" must be one of the finest prog overtures ever, a sweeping and sorrowful musical buffet with loads of synthesizer, harpsichord, church organ and piano, supplemented by assorted sonic effects, as if a score for some cinematographic screenplay. Guitars, bass and drums, as well as flute add to the formula nicely. "The Journey Begins" starts off with some introductory female vocals and then morphs into a massive rock guitar mode with zany synths, booming bass and a mood that works. Things get slightly corny with "Join Us" with some semi-operatic vocal stylistics that makes one chuckle rather than applaud, followed by the brief but lovely "Doubt" where the voice works nicely and the acoustic guitar weaves magic. "Fight the World" resorts to bringing back the raging symphonics with tornado synths and hurricane guitars (Miss Jody van der Gijze is really good!). The mood is tripped up somewhat with some inane vocal duets that do little to impress but the music is damn good! On the other hand, "Longing for my Childhood" is a winner vocally and possesses a cascading electric guitar solo that is jaw- dropping not unlike the Moog solo that follows and the serene oboe spot that stamps its exclamation point fittingly. This is a high watermark track and absolutely admirable. "Bright Spots" is a rockier piece, full of breakneck guitar speed and chugging organ bravado, while the synths swerve like a kite in a crosswind gale. This is another corker. The whisper-led "Envy" is entertaining, faintly spooky and diminutive. "Miss Fortune" is contemporary and quite amusing, well-sung and lusty. There are three interwoven interludes that are as astounding as anything else on the album, "Turn the Page", "Dark Page" and "Forgotten Page" are what makes this suite tick. I am not a fan of the next track as its vocally simplistic, quirky to the point of disinterest but at least the instrumental playing is great, as witnessed by a stellar organ solo, a blistering synth solo that would make Wakeman quake (oh my, wordplay!). At times the vocal work seems like a Meatloaf-like rehash (and I never liked Meatloaf, in music or culinary arts) and I find that style beyond boring. "Free!" has a kick-ass bass solo from Iris Sagan , a De Beer ivory romp once again, and some well-heeled drive that is most delicious. "Credo" is a flute-driven mini-symphony and happens to be gorgeously sung (finally), crowned by a shimmering guitar excursion and an elegant piano solo. All amazing stuff. The closing "The Last Page" is breathtaking in its intensity, range and talent, an inspired instrumental that would please any fan with progressive leanings, the same repeated glorious melody now reaching grandiose heights, oboe and bassoon joining the fret and key board fray.

So, if you temporarily omit the overt-erratic operatic vocal diminishments, the music on CD1 stands nicely on its own, with numerous outbursts of genius.

CD2- "The Narrow Path" is another kettle of fish, mostly instrumental by nature as per the blistering opening keyboard typhoon launch "Turn the Key" which overtly espouses the Van der Linden (Trace, Ekseption) touch, Erik's agile fingers racing over the keys, pummeled along by bludgeoning bass and deft drumming. ELP fans will pee their underwear, I assure you. After the storm, peaceful serenity takes over with the ornate elegance of the neo- classical"Miniature 8 La Melancolie", all piano and flute, utterly engrossing! Another change of pace is the epic title track, "The Narrow Path" a cinematographic suite that sounds like a soundtrack for a WWII movie, a heavy percussion laden doomsday thread that infuses a mischievously meandering oboe, colossal mellotron waves, bombastic guitar and enough twists and turns to qualify as a sonic pretzel factory. When the gurgling organ shows its startling face, the mood gets hot, heavy and sweaty to any progfan's delight. The fiery axe lays down a metalloid barrage, depth charge riffs galore and sizzling tracer fire that only swells the heartbeat, as the gloomy dictatorial lyrics contain references to jihad, dogma, fanaticism and hatred, as expressed by the final stanza "headscarves, signs of weakness become exploding hand grenades, the Cross, the sign of meekness has turned into a gun" Whoa, that's pretty heady stuff , quite in tune with the current tensions of social malaise churning through Western Europe. The music only heightens the desperate angst! A brilliant track indeed. Four short instrumental ditties are next in line, all flowing nicely into another with the playful "Monkey Business" up first where Erik's piano skills are fully developed, yet leaving enough room for the flute to flutter away. "The Happiness Theme" proposes a glittering oboe and electric guitar duet, each soloing mightily spliced by some trembling synthesizer snippets, a happy and exhilarating mood indeed. Amazing stuff! "Collage 11" reverts to a more bucolic theme, a banquet of acoustic guitar, flute and oboe that spirals sunnily into the azure sky, supercilious, lighthearted and windswept. Finally, the fourth piece is back to the neo- classical mold with another "Miniature 6 La Flegmatique" that is piano-driven, oboe- adorned and enchanting. These are all quite interesting and fulfilling interludes before diving into another vocal track "Does it Help?" an older 1991 track that was recorded for this album. Frankly, I find it strangely at odds with the rest of the disc, a spotlessly clean ballad that is at the very best cute but the hackneyed lyrics are somewhat childish to these ears anyway. Musically, the playing is lightweight and plodding, offering up no pizzazz at all but saved by a decent series of guitar solos and its synthy companion, only towards the very end is their any passion. Oh well! "The French Wrench" closes out this epic slice of symphonic album quite tastily, a traditional piece redone by Erik and it's a whoosher to say the least, a power-medieval prog keyboard extravaganza, something Par Lindh would create, with churning buttery organ, glittering harpsichord, ripping synthesizer thunderbolts and raging guitar('coustic and 'lectric) flashes.

I enjoyed this massive 2 CD album a lot, with 70 minutes of pure bliss and 30 minutes of dross. It is extremely rare to find a 2 CD album with 100% perfection, so what's the big deal in giving this release 4.5 rubber dinghies

Latest members reviews

5 stars With the Life Line Project album "The Journey" you get the best value for your money. It's a double disc with a lavish booklet, showing all aspects and possibilities of the band. The first disc contains the complete "Journey To The Heart Of Your Mind", a piece that lasts a bit longer than one ... (read more)

Report this review (#932002) | Posted by Whistler | Monday, March 18, 2013 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Life Line Project deliver beautiful and warm sounding symphonic rock, full of beautiful themes and beautiful arrangements. "The Journey" is a double disc, of which the first one is entirely filled with "Journey To The Heart Of Your Mind", a work of about 60 minutes, describing the search of man look ... (read more)

Report this review (#872753) | Posted by Izabelle | Friday, December 7, 2012 | Review Permanlink

5 stars After having reviewed several albums by my compatriots from LIFE LINE PROJECT I received their latest album "The Journey". This time it appeared to be a double disc set with a lavish booklet containing all lyrics and necessary info with a background of very beautiful pictures, all shot by Hele ... (read more)

Report this review (#867355) | Posted by Dutchman | Tuesday, November 27, 2012 | Review Permanlink

4 stars As a Hammond freak I was immediately struck when I discovered on YouTube the fantastic Life Line Project song "Turn The Key" in which both some incredible Hammond and Moog playing could be heard. I wanted to have more of that and I ordered the album right away, but when I listened to the compl ... (read more)

Report this review (#862931) | Posted by Drawbars | Tuesday, November 20, 2012 | Review Permanlink

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