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Eyesberg Blue album cover
3.81 | 56 ratings | 6 reviews | 12% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2014

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Child's Play (4:33)
2. Epitaph (5:19)
3. Closed Until The Resurrection (6:35)
4. Winter Gone (5:02)
5. Inquisitive (3:32)
6. Feed Yourself (8:18)
7. 4-2-F (1:24)
8. Faces On My Wall (5:19)
9. Porcelain (3:33)
10. If I Told You The Truth (5:46)
11. S II (3:03)
12. Detachment and Replacement (5:29)

Total time 57:53

Line-up / Musicians

- Malcolm Shuttleworth / lead & backing vocals
- Georg Alfter / guitar, bass
- Norbert Podien / keyboards, drum programming, mixing

- Ulf Jacobs / drums

Releases information

Artwork: Georg Alfter, Thomas Klarmann

CD Progressive Promotion Records ‎- PPRCD026 (2014, Germany)

Digital album

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EYESBERG Blue ratings distribution

(56 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(12%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(46%)
Good, but non-essential (34%)
Collectors/fans only (7%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

EYESBERG Blue reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars EYESBERG is a British-German outfit consisting of Malcolm Shuttleworth on vocals, Norbert Podien (keyboards) and Georg Alfter on guitar and bass that I accidently discovered on progstreaming that captured my attention from the very first few seconds, a serious bunch of older gentlemen who seemingly are seasoned pros in the art of divine prog , sprinkled with clever melodies, sparkling soloing and a truly inspiring lead vocalist, all conspiring to dilute the interval between accessible and creative. They enjoy muscular deliveries, remindful at times of Spooky Tooth, Saga, Supertramp, as well as obvious Genesis and early Marillion, applied with deliberate talent and zealous confidence. Each piece has a gargantuan melody, garlanded by smoking keyboards, furious beat and manly guitar, I mean the instrumental foundation is absolutely first rate, I even caught myself wondering 'who are these older dudes'? Recently, via a poll on PA to find vocalists who could sing like Phil Collins (beyond his son Simon), there were only a few candidates like Nad Sylvan (Unifaun, Hackett) as well as Glenn MacLaughlin of Iluvatar but my vote goes to Malcolm Shuttleworth , who can ,and often is, a dead ringer for the ex-Genesis frontman.

Effervescent synthesizer salvos greet the unsuspecting listener, as a power riff cruncher then takes over with solid rhythmic pressure courtesy of veteran drummer Ulf Jacobs (Argos). "Child's Play" introduces a typical neo-prog atmosphere, a stories universe of sound and verse that exudes both warmth and intelligence. This is a fine opener, a harbinger of what is to come, a series of bright, crisp and attractive compositions firmly encamped in the neo camp.

The spectacular "Epitaph" has Malcolm shadowing Uncle Phil Collins rather brilliantly without any overt drool, just a hefty load of melodrama to spur the moment along. Norbert Podien has his ivories harrumphing like a slew of elephants in a peanut gallery, blitzkrieg guitar flurries help to elevate the pleasure but the rich melodies are the main attraction.

Right behind is another winner, the divine "Closed Until the Resurrection" (now that is wordplay if I ever read one) which motors right from the start with guzzling guitar and slippery synth whooshes, the Collins reference is immediate and strangely comforting, as if re-mindful of what Genesis could have been , had it decided to remain firmly a symph/neo-prog spearhead. A spooky keyboard mid-section does wonders for the soul as Shuttleworth gets into his storytelling mode , here closer to Fish than anyone else. The guitar is both brash and splashy, equally entrancing in rhythm or lead mode, highlighting an already delicious track.

The delicate flute ponders its place in the mixture, veering initially into Ant Phillips circa The Ghost and the Geese territory, as "Winter Gone" could have easily been a prog radio hit as the tune just blooms into a lovely balled dripping with Trick of the Tail era magic. Everything impresses immediately and is extremely enjoyable.

This same aura is repeated on the following "Inquisitive", another lively affair that remains brief but playful. Prog-pop is admittedly not everyone's cup of tea but on occasion, you need some simple snack food to calm the urges and satisfy the hunger for easily digestible fare. This is just pure fun, nothing more, nothing less.

The obvious crowning achievement here is "Feed Yourself" an 8 minute prog slice that has a slow burning fuse intro that will sweep one off their feet, a howling mellotron hurricane that will blow you sideways. Malcolm really comes across as a cool lead vocalist, doing a fine mix of Phil Collins, Fish, Cy Curnin (The Fixx) and Michael Sadler. The guitar blasts furiously, always in a riotous exaltation, Jacobs slamming hard, while the synthesizers carve their stone. Richly dense, the groove is relentless and awe-inspiring! This should be heralded as a classic 2014 prog epic, a suave box of candied musical arrangements and dramatic vocals that cannot disappoint even the distant fan.

After a brief intro, five songs are featured in intervals of 5 and 3 minute pieces, showing their more accessible side. "Faces on my Way" is perhaps a bit weaker than all the previous glory but is still not filler by any stretch. Just a slight jazzier approach, with fluid guitar and keyboard interventions that inspire another solid vocal performance. The 3 minute "Porcelain" is fast and furious, catchy and fun as well as featuring some nimble back and forth soloing between synths and axes. The attention to details is obvious, a carefully clever manipulation of the senses, as the music balanced between familiar and unexpected. This is best exemplified in glowing colour on a track such as "If I told you the truth", a pop song with balls, commercial at first but the musical prowess soon shows itself to be seductively overwhelming. I could have done without the 'baby' pseudo-R&B inserts but that is nit-picking, the piece is a well-crafted, bombastic and toe-tapping ride. "SII" is almost like a modern version of "Smoke on the Water", staunch guitar riffing with juicy solos and escorted by slippery supersonic synths flying overhead, you will cream your jeans here, boys and girls! Smooooookin'! The intent is again to highlight a sense of enjoyment and not necessarily a stab at crowning the hopeless charts, as music like this will never appeal to the current market anyway, too many solos and sharp playing for such an apathetic crowd. The disc finishes off with a Spooky Tooth/Uriah Heep vibe on the next one, 'a real rockinrolla'! bullied by a vituperative organ and a choppy blues style. "Detachment and Replacement" is a fine finale.

This is an ear catching debut album with some great pieces, their next one should determine their place in prog . I for one suggest to expand the progressive tendencies even further and delve into even more complex arrangements as well as wilder tonal explorations and maybe even reconnoiter some more profound themes. A pleasant azure artwork seals the teal (oops I mean, deal), a fantastic discovery that needs a wider audience. Devout Genesis fans unite and search out "Blue"!

4 floating ocular cubes

Review by Gerinski
4 stars Eyesberg are a veteran German band who were playing already in the late 1970's and early 1980's but their original music never got released. 30 years later three of the original members (guitar & bass player Georg Alfter, keyboardist Norbert Podien and Germany-based British singer Malcolm Shuttleworth), encouraged by the modern easier possibilities to record and release an album, decided to rework their old stuff and finally release it.

Fortunately they got the collaboration from drummer Ulf Jacobs from Argos, a band formed by another of the original Eyesberg members Thomas Klarmann, instead of having to resort to programmed drum tracks. Ulf's drumming is really good and fits the music well.

The music and sound are reminiscent of 80's ' 90's Genesis mixed with 80's Camel and other Neo bands like Illuvatar, Quidam or Everon. Shuttleworth's voice frequently sounds similar to Phil Collins, occasionally adopting a more theatrical style which can remind of Fish, although with a more positive spirit instead of the frequent sombreness of the latter.

Highly melodic and easy-listening tunes, where the progginess comes more from frequent breaks and tempo and section changes rather than odd time signatures per se or technicality show-offs. Most songs are relatively short (around the 5 min mark) and yet they contain several sections so they flow nicely, nothing gets too long and the transitions are always fitting and nicely resolved, unlike other bands whose transitions sound patchy and forced.

Guitars are Rothery / Latimer influenced, melodic and never too distorted. Soloing by guitar and keys are often more melodic lines rather than traditional rock soloing. Flute sounds are frequently used, even in some uptempo sections, giving some Camel-esque or Quidam-esque vibe, although no flute player is credited so I assume they are produced with the keyboards.

The tracks contain a variety of tempos and dynamic patterns and they are well arranged in terms of sequence so the complete album has a nice dynamic flow. I find the last two tracks rather weak and they could have been dropped making a better 50 min album, and 'Winter Gone' is a bit cheesy, sounding like a Phil Collins ballad but it's not bad, and for the rest all the tracks are at a similarly good quality level. The production is good and clear from what I can say from listening to the album on Progstreaming via my computer and hi-fi system.

There's nothing too spectacular in this album but the music is well composed, arranged and performed. I would say, excellent addition for Neo fans, while harder-edged proggers will probably find it a bit bland.

Review by Windhawk
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars German band EYESBERG was originally active from the late '70s until the early '80s, but without ever recording any material in their initial phase of existence. A few years back the band was resurrected, and from what I understand, their belated debut album "Blue", released through Progressive Promotion Records, primarily consists of material from the band's initial phase some 30 odd years ago.

A few late tracks aside, "Blue" comes across as a charming take on the more accessible side of Genesis sometime around 1980, with compositions that combine accessible features and a progressive rock-oriented approach in an elegant and keyboards-dominated manner, complete with a lead vocalist with a voice and tone reminding of Phil Collins. As such an album that those with a taste for Genesis as they appeared sometime around 1980 might want to investigate.

Review by kev rowland
4 stars It must be said that Eyesberg are a band with something of a back story. They came together in Frankfurt around 1980, with a line-up Georg Alfter, Michael Buchner, Norbert Podien, Thomas Klarmann and Malcolm Shuttleworth. Although they wrote several songs, they never released an album, and they all went on to other things. Thomas later enjoyed success as a member of Argos and Superdrama, and this spurred some of the others to revisit the old Eyesberg songs and see what they could do with them now. Malcolm Shuttleworth (vocals), Norbert Podien (keyboards, drum programming, backing vocals) and Georg Alfter (guitar, bass), were joined by Klarmann's Argos bandmate Ulf Jacobs on drums, but neither Thomas nor other original member Michael Buchner were involved this time around.

Given that these songs were written more than thirty-five years ago, as opposed to 2014 when they were released, it isn't surprising at all that they have far less in common with modern prog, and the album has quite a retro feel. This is enhanced by the quite large use of flute sounds from the keyboards, and it certainly makes me think of the type of music that Steve Hackett was producing at the time, as well as last Seventies Genesis. It is an incredibly enjoyable piece of work throughout, and the very English vocals of Malcolm come across as a mix of Gabriel and Roger Chapman, with hints of Peter Nicholls. Overall this is a very enjoyable album and I was keen to see if they would stick around to release another.

Latest members reviews

3 stars 3,5 stars !!! This album is a enjoyable surprise, because , on the contrary of most of the Germany bands , the music in EYESBERG "Blue" is very "graceful" and "light" in instrumentation in comparison with "mainstream" of musical style from German bands. Although, some people could think " is ... (read more)

Report this review (#1584609) | Posted by maryes | Saturday, July 2, 2016 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Very enjoyable album from a new group out of Frankfurt, Germany. They have played together before in other bands and it shows. They do not sound like a new band. Their decades of experience shines through. The production is very clear allowing every instrument to be heard. The vocals are quite g ... (read more)

Report this review (#1319592) | Posted by OneOpinion | Wednesday, December 3, 2014 | Review Permanlink

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