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Crystal Palace


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Crystal Palace Dawn of Eternity album cover
3.90 | 137 ratings | 3 reviews | 21% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2016

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Dawn (2:35)
2. Confess Your Crime (8:26)
3. Eternal Step (6:31)
4. Any Colour You Need (8:19)
5. Daylight After the Rain (3:32)
6. Fields of Consciousness (6:35)
7. Hearts on Sale (5:45)
8. Eternity (2:00)
9. All of This (5:43)
10. Sky Without Stars (5:21)
11. The Day That Doesn't End (4:15)

Total Time 59:02

Line-up / Musicians

- Nils Conrad / electric & acoustic guitars
- Frank Köhler / keyboards, programming
- Jens Uwe Strutz / bass, bass pedals, guitar (5), vocals
- Tom Ronney / drums, keyboards

- Markus Reuter / guitar synth & U8 touch guitar (5,6,9)
- Dominic Groeger / vocals (6)

Releases information

Artwork: Reimar Walter

CD Gentle Art Of Music ‎- GAOM 045 (2016, Germany)

Thanks to mbzr48 for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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CRYSTAL PALACE Dawn of Eternity ratings distribution

(137 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(21%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(45%)
Good, but non-essential (19%)
Collectors/fans only (11%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

CRYSTAL PALACE Dawn of Eternity reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by tszirmay
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars The heavy prog throne is currently vacant, what with Porcupine Tree on a seemingly ardent sabbatical, while Steve Wilson edifies his solo career and Riverside overcoming the profound grief of losing their gifted guitarist Piotr Grudzinski to sudden illness. There seems to be few contenders, most people eyeing Haken as the likeliest candidate. There is another band that has silently built up quite a career but really hitting their mark with their recent output, cemented by their 2013 album 'System of Events', which caught the prog world collective ears and singed them with some powerful material as well as some astute guests aiding the cause (Colin Edwin of PT, Yogi Lang and Kalle Wallner of RPWL). Blessed with a fluent guitarist in Nils Conrad (who toiled with fellow Berlin groups Margin and For Your Pleasure) that album had a few searing scorchers as well as some slow burning jewels , namely the expressive "Beautiful Nightmare" which has rooted itself permanently into my automobile IPod. I was therefore curious if that tumultuous release could be even surpassed in intensity and focus, so I am happy to report that in typical Teutonic fashion, the discipline has kept them in line and that 'Dawn of Eternity' is just as delectable! The line-up has altered only with the arrival of impressive drummer Tom Ronney and features guest Markus Reuter and his touch guitar (heard previously on Herd of Instinct, Ian Boddy, The Crimson Projeckt, Adrian Benavides albums). Founding leader Yenz (Jens Sturz) and his bold bass playing allied with a powerful voice, the group is a tight, versatile and determined unit.

Franz Köhler's keyboards and synths set the murky tone on "Dawn" a short and moody intro that crackles with imminent despair with Ronney's tectonic drum kit providing some bash. A perfect set up for the razor-sharp "Confess Your Crime", a slashing and thrashing 8 minute riff that is secured by a wildly secure beat, contrasting with some mellower moments that only serve to elevate the intensity. The bass scours the underside while the slippery synths patrol overhead, the rhythmic guitar assault moves forward like a blitzkrieg surge, devastating and inexorable. The binary thunderclaps wreak havoc, smashing ahead undeterred, as suddenly Yenz squeezes the softest emotions from his mike, the bass ravaging sensually. Conrad then grasps the spotlight with a mercurial electric foray that worms forward, eventually bleeding, gushing and spewing trickles of notes with understated élan.

"Eternal Sleep" maintains the pace with a brooding phrasing, until piano and voice unite briefly, before welding itself onto the original groove. The rhythmic tandem hits hard and keeps the arrangement purring, as Conrad coils into the horizon with a plaintive solo, resolute and aflame. A perfect segue to the previous blowout and just waiting to add the sulfurous "Any Colour you Need" , another 8 minute masterpiece that winks at that magnificent epic (Beautiful Nightmare) on the previous album. This is a melancholic, highly colored (pun intended) and extremely shivering piece of modern prog that captivates, sequesters and then, throws away the key. Nothing earth shatteringly novel in terms of creativity, just deeply heartfelt, barely restrained and passionate and eventually, as when Ronney muscles through, explosive. These opening tunes are held together brilliantly, almost like a suite, erecting a multi-part sonic monument that deserves plaudits and some stand up ovations.

"Daylight after the Rain" says it all in the title, as a new chapter is being read out loud, in briefer and sweeter terms. Acoustic guitar, saccharine electric leads and echoed voice all conveying a sense of renewal and shuddering delight, there is a pastoral, bucolic tinge that exudes simplicity and restful nuance. The band sounds quite like fellow Germans RPWL, clearly a great influence and that is not intended as a criticism, au contraire.

The extended atmospherics return on "Fields of Consciousness", giving way to clanging guitars within a Floydian expanse, a buzzing bass slaloming between a despondent and echoed voice, amid cannonading beats. It now becomes quite apparent that Crystal Palace has achieved a clear and concision vision of what they wish to accomplish in terms of modern prog and they are well-versed in the art of maintaining a sense of continuity. The rather socially acerbic commentary on "Hearts on Sale" keeps the sizzle bubbling, even though the topic matter is rather gloom-laden, that eternal and elusive search for happiness, the music keeps pushing all the right buttons, a coalition of slicing synthesizers and shearing electric guitars stamp the lyrics with affirmation, the music obtrusive, obsessive and poignant. The drums pummel harder than ever before, a real concussive treat.

The brief 2 minute "Eternity" is intended as a clever intermezzo before the last three tracks come into play, coyly brooding and ethereal that bleeds right into the grandiose riff of "All of This", a chugging sonic bulldozer, as heavy guitars, hefty bass, heaving drums and harrowing synths shove the mood forever forward. Nothing overtly complex, just rocking prog with method, vision and passion.

The last two tunes qualify as a mini-suite, easily bleeding into one another. "Sky without Stars" is definitely moodier, Yenz delivering a rapturous vocal, clanging guitars in the nighttime haze building an arching melody that soars high and mighty (hints of Anathema). Nils Conrad licks mightily on his fret board, crafting screeching emotions that tingle the spine and reach out to the universe. The final track "The Day that Doesn't End" muscles forward gently, scouring the dark expanse of firmament, starless and perhaps even 'bible black', as the pulsating bass noodles wildly and slick axe flickerings grab the attention span. The slowly expiring mood is breathlessly exquisite.

Crystal Palace, a name to reckon with among the bullying candidates seeking the top of the prog podium, and certainly a perfect choice for muscular and masculine heavy progressive rock.

5 Emergence of Perpetuities

Review by Windhawk
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars German band CRYSTAL PALACE has a history going back more than 20 years, but has spent the greater majority of these as something of an underground entity known by a select few. However, things started to change ever so slightly in that department a few years back, and then especially after the band signed with the German label Gentle Art of Music. "Dawn of Eternity" is their latest studio album, and was released through the aforementioned label in the summer of 2016.

Crystal Palace as of 2016 comes across as a quality band firmly placed within a neo-progressive rock general sphere of reference. Layered keyboards and careful to majestic guitar and keyboards-driven arrangements with a strong focus on melodies and harmonies are the order of the day, with contrasts carefully explored rather than dramatically applied. Those with an interest in later day neo-progressive rock should find this production to be a rewarding one, and those who tend to enjoy listening to bands such as RPWL will most likely find this album to be of interest as well.

Latest members reviews

5 stars By now the melancholic neo-prog bands that update their sound by playing heavier, with more modern electronics and anthemic choruses, seem as common as the pompous prog metal bands of the Dream Theater variety. Crystal Palace on their latest CD delivers a predictable but enjoyable variation on t ... (read more)

Report this review (#1617936) | Posted by Progrussia | Sunday, October 2, 2016 | Review Permanlink

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