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Transport Aerian

Crossover Prog

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Transport Aerian Darkblue album cover
3.72 | 39 ratings | 3 reviews | 11% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2015

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Black (4:40)
2. Full Body Access (4:15)
3. Sand Horizon (4:50)
4. Imperial (5:34)
5. Crossbreed (3:17)
6. Sniper (3:51)
7. Epitaph (8:06)
8. Happy with the Future (6:12)

Total Time 40:45

Line-up / Musicians

- Hamlet / vocals, guitars, keyboards, bass, programming, drums, samples
- Rachel Bauer / spoken word, vocals

Releases information

Label: Melodic Revolution Records
Format: CD, Digital
May 1, 2015

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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TRANSPORT AERIAN Darkblue ratings distribution

(39 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(11%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(32%)
Good, but non-essential (41%)
Collectors/fans only (11%)
Poor. Only for completionists (5%)

TRANSPORT AERIAN Darkblue reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Second Life Syndrome
4 stars 4.5 stars

I'm so proud of Hamlet. I really am. I originally discovered his unique music with 2013′s 'Bleeding' and again with his spectacular live album 'Love.Blood.Live.'. Hamlet is one of those musicians that manages to keep my interest by being completely out of his mind, but totally focused and brilliant at the same time. His project, Transport Aerian, is finally making some real headway of late, and their new album 'Darkblue' might be Hamlet's best work to date.

This time around, Hamlet handles everything from vocals and guitar to bass and programming; however, Stefan Boeykens also steps in on guitars, and, in what I found to be a surprising move, he also added the beautiful voice of Rachel Bauer, too. These three have created something truly special that is dark (obviously), murky, effervescent, and stark. There is a poetic motion that occupies this album in full, with rhythm and flow, ugliness and sadness, abrasion and melancholy. Yet, the album features bright keys, incredibly groovy moments, and, dare I say, very catchy sequences that seem pop-ish in some ways. Now, I know Hamlet will hate me for saying that, but the album is the better for it.

This isn't happy music. If you think you will be uplifted and edified, you'll be sadly mistaken. Hamlet's music absorbs his own natural cynicism and sarcastic nature: a kind of frustration with society and people in general. Not only do his lyrics reflect this, but the music itself is rarely structured normally, and that's a good thing. As for Hamlet himself, he does a great job on vocals, as I feel that he's really gotten past some of the snarkier moments that were a bit difficult in past albums. Rachel, too, is a wonderful counterpart for him, adding warmth and psychedelia to an already crazy album.

Without a question, my favorite track on 'Darkblue' is 'Black'. Honestly, this might be one of my top tracks of the year, too. It transitions from subdued and poetic to climactic and breathtaking in the blink of an eye. It gets me every time. Other favorites are the sensual 'Full Body Access', the warmly abrasive and bleak 'Sand Horizon', the instrumental 'Sniper', and, my second favorite, 'Epitaph', where Hamlet gives us probably his best vocals on the album.

Buy this album. You will not find anything else like Transport Aerian's 'Darkblue' this year, or any year, really. Hamlet has managed to best even his incredible live album by creating real texture, very human relatability, and haunting musical atmospheres. Give into the darkness.

Originally written for

Review by Angelo
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars When I was in high school, I always looked at the aspiring musicians in my school (some got quite far with their aspirations too) as if they were some sort of mystics. They always had this sense of being untouchable, impossible to understand around them. That feeling disappeared over time, as I kept in touch with some of them, and it turned out that they were just moving into the same musical areas where I ended up (albeit I started as a listener and became a player only much later). End of 2014, in the chatroom of House of Prog, I ran into Hamlet, the man behind Transport Aerian, and that old feeling returned. This man seemed to be very intelligent, open for communication, but also somehow distant, almost unapproachable. Now, half a year later, I know that the latter is not true, Hamlet is indeed intelligent, but certainly open for communications. However, unlike my old school mates, he is much less moving into the mainstream (or mainstream prog) direction than many others.

When I started reviewing his new album Darkblue, I was thinking of writing a double review for that album and the live album Love.Blood.Live, which preceded it last year. That wouldn't do justice to Darkblue however, because this is vastly different from Transport Aerian's earlier work. Where, as Hamlet wrote in his blog himself, Bleeding (studio album) and Love.Blood.Live are more song oriented, Darkblue is a surrealistic movie expressed in music and the visuals of the accompanying artwork. To that will, as plans are being announced now, the visuals of a live performance will be added later.

This album for sure is what the title suggest, dark, but not pitch black (although Jim Morrison's work with The Doors is almost white compared to this). The music is haunting and minimalistic (Sand Horizon), experimental at times (Black), leaning towards industrial in places (Full Body Access, ), while building almost psychedelic soundscapes in others (Epitaph) - and then there is something close to hard rock or metal as well (Crossbreed).

The lyrics, spoken and sung by Hamlet and his accomplice for this album Rachel Bauer (also responsible for the mystic photos in the album booklet) tell a story of, in Hamlets own words 'exile, self-isolation and love' - in a dialog between two people. As explained on the Transport Aerian blog, this "is the one-piece musical diary that tells the surreal love story, which is being recited throughout the album's temporal and spatial space from the face of two main characters". A concept that makes it nearly impossible to do a track by track review. In all honesty, I see no point in listening to individual tracks anyway - this is indeed a single piece of music. Thus, I'll hold back on that and just recommend anyone who's in for something non-conformist, experimental and as true to art as art can be, to give this album a try and experience for themselves what Hamlet felt when writing this music, and what Rachel Bauer and him made out of that when recording.

I really hope I'll be able to catch a live performance of this album, if only to see if my own visualisations match those of the artists. Hamlet announced working on the scenario for a live performance as I write this, so perhaps see you there, dear reader?

(also published on my blog

Review by Windhawk
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Belgian project TRANSPORT AERIAN was formed by composer and musician Hamlet back in 2003 as a creative outlet and solo venture for his music. The debut ablum "Blessed" was released in 2009, and since then three more studio productions and one live CD have been released under this moniker. "Darkblue" is the most recent of those, and was released in 2015 by Melodic Revolution Records.

"Darkblue" is an album that will appeal to those drawn to darkness, those who manage to understand and cherish the beauty of horror, the aesthetics of bad dreams, the stark brilliancy of brutal honesty. It probably also calls out for listeners with more of an introverted nature and personality, as the atmospheres and feelings explored won't be those you'd bring over to friends to chit-chat over. Progressive rock fans of the kind that frequently have artists like Nine Inch Nails and perhaps also Gary Numan on their playlist come across as a key audience, I imagine most of those who recognize themselves in that description will appreciate the relative charms of this disc.

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