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Galasphere 347

Symphonic Prog

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Galasphere 347 Galasphere 347 album cover
3.79 | 131 ratings | 3 reviews | 20% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2018

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. The Voice of Beauty Drowned (10:43)
2. The Fallen Angel (15:35)
3. Barbarella's Lover (15:18)

Total Time 41:36

Line-up / Musicians

- Stephen James Bennett / vocals, keyboards, guitars, bass pedals
- Jacob Holm-Lupo / guitar, bass, mixing
- Ketil Vestrum Einarsen / keyboards, programming, flute
- Mattias Olsson / drums, keyboards, bass pedals, guitar

- Dave Scragg / trombone
- Akaba / backing vocals

Releases information

Mixed by HOLM-LUPO at Dude Ranch Studios, Sandøya, Norway and mastered by Andy Jackson, best known for his work with PINK FLOYD.

Artwork: Jarrod Gosling

CD Karisma Records ‎- KAR144CD (2018, Norway)

LP Karisma Records ‎- KAR144LP (2018, Norway)

Digital album

Thanks to aapatsos for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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GALASPHERE 347 Galasphere 347 ratings distribution

(131 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(20%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(42%)
Good, but non-essential (28%)
Collectors/fans only (9%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

GALASPHERE 347 Galasphere 347 reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by rdtprog
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Heavy, RPI, Symph, JR/F Canterbury Teams
5 stars Here's the new project of a super-group of musicians from White Willow, Anglagard and Henry Fool. The album is 3 long pieces for 41 minutes. It's no surprise that this is a return to the 70's symphonic prog rock. So we can hear some vintage sound with a modern production. The music is keyboard oriented but with some busy drums. The guitar is more of a support except for some breakout in the last song who is the highlight of the album The first song starts with some ambient music, The keys make their appearance that could remind us of the style of Glass Hammer with that distinctive bass sound, but the surprises is from the beautiful flute passage. The vocals are a bit weak, remind me of Tim Bowness and this is not the deepest lyrics I have heard, but does it matter? The second track is driven by some exquisite keyboards melodies again, and another surprise is coming with a trumpet part! The keys display some British influence of Camel while the drums patterns draw some similarity with a military march, a bit like the classical song of Ravel "Bolero". The third track picks up his momentum with an instrumental break and it's the beginning of a roller coaster ride of high emotion where the song gained some pace with some amazing symphonic prog rock. The guitar for the first time comes out of his shell before a return to the ambient style of the intro of the album. The drum part style of "Bolero" or what Pallas has done in "March of Atlantis" is back. This song displays all the moods of what we expect for an epic song. This is a really good first album from this band, just hope to hear more in the future... 4.6****
Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars A veritable supergroup lays down some gorgeous music in a style reminiscent of NO-MAN, GENESIS, PINK FLOYD, STEVE HACKETT, and even ASIA.

1. "The Voice of Beauty Drowned" (10:42) an awesome opening until 2:33 when all is diminished by an ASIA-like chorus. The song very quickly "recovers" and returns to some gorgeous music not unlike the best of early STEVE HACKETT (Spectral Mornings thru Cured), but that chorus is dreadful! Great keyboard work from the whole band. Nice voice of Stephen Bennett, effected in a similar way to some of those early Steve Hackett albums or 2016's TONY PATTERSON solo project. Drums, bass, and guitars are solid. Love the airy flute. Too bad about that chorus. Weird pause and "transition" in the middle--like it becomes a totally different song. (17.5/20)

2. "The Fallen Angel" (15:35) this one opens sounding like a NINE STONES CLOSE song--full of delicate 1980s sounding guitars and synth strings washes over which a plaintive TIM BOWNESS-like voice sings. The song remains simple in construction and performance through the chorus and bridge--sounding a lot like GENESIS' "Follow You, Follow Me." Mattias Olsson's drum work starts to get exciting behind the second verse. I very much like Jacob Holm-Lupo's guitar solo in the fifth minute--after which there is a tempo and theme change--not quite Canterbury but definitely Caribbean- or Latin-influenced jazz-rock. Nice! This is so fresh! Finally, some inventive, refreshing prog for 2018! (Who's playing the trumpet in the seventh minute? Matthias?) At 7:45 there is another shift into some lush militaristic progginess over which Stephen's heavily-treated voice sings in his Bowness way. Farfisa?! Minimoog ?! in a GENESIS Wind and Wuthering-like instrumental section. The vocal also sounds like THE FLAMING LIPS' Wayne Coyne during this SIMPLE MINDS' "Don't You (Forget About Me)" section. A gorgeous if contrived heart-string pulling section then interludes another return to the Genesis-like theme and the successive same Simple Minds theme. Pretty cool song despite the stolen sections and sounds. All spliced together into something fresh and unusual. (26/30)

3. "Barbarella's Lover" (15:17) opens with a sparseness that is reminiscent of something off of a NO-MAN album. Gorgeous. The vocal stylings are so similar to those of Tim Bowness. After 90 seconds the full band joins in with a kind of WESERBERGLAND Kosmische groove--all the while retaining the Tony Banks-ian keys and Bowness vocal stylings. African percussives occupy the fourth minute lull before the groove returns to a panning version of Mattias' Kosmische groove--over which Canterburian and Banksian keyboards alternate. The vocals weaken and the synth solos get a little mundane/boring; the song needs something fresh and explosive (or implosive). Just as I wrote this, at the nine minute mark, all music cuts out to leave a solo guitar coolly squealing away. Bennett sings, the band rejoins with a militaristic beat and Mellotron washes. Then at 10:45 another tempo and theme shift with muted guitar strums and Hammond organ solos. Nice cinematic Latin-inflused chord progression here. It all comes together in the middle of the thirteenth minute with a brilliant drumming pattern combining the Kosmische groove with the militaristic timings over which multiple keyboards and electric guitar bob 'n' weave, and, of course, solo, followed by the "It's one a.m." vocal section to finish. A strange song. It'll take me a few listens to decide if I just like it or love it. In the end it kind of leaves me numbed by the Weserbergland, Tim Bowness, and Genesis "The Knife" similarities. (26/30)

A very nice sounding Neo Prog album with high creativity coming from these musical giants but . . . it could've been so much more. Mattias Olsson's drumming is nothing like the jaw-dropping stuff he used to do with Änglagård. Steve Bennett's vocals are a little too familiar--sounding a little too much like Tim Bowness. Ketil Vestrum Einarsen's wonderful flutes are virtually absent. Jacob Holm-Lupo's inventive guitar sounds and solos are a high point but are too rare and too fleeting.

B/4 stars; an excellent piece of retro-inspired progressive rock music.

Review by Mellotron Storm
3 stars 3.5 stars. This is a multi-national four piece band and yes we can call this a supergroup. Mattias Olsson on drums, Jacob Holm-Lupo guitar, Ketil Vestrum Einarsen keyboards and flute and Stephen Bennett on vocals and keyboards. These guys play more instruments but these are their main weapons. This is Stephan Bennett's baby and he's from HENRY FOOL and certainly that band's debut was brought to mind when listening to this record. Some funny quotes attributed to each musician in the liner notes like under Stephen it says "Jar har en fuzz-box och jag ska anvanda den". Under Ketil it says "No, it's not prog. It's basically a pop band. The songs are just a little bit longer than normal." Under Jacob "This is the final version", and lastly Mattias "I've seen the mix notes".

First listens are telling for me and the vocals do not convince me and especially on that second track. If I didn't know Mattias was the drummer I'd be complaining. Okay still am because of the "sound" of the drums which I find annoying. They clearly are out to get a certain sound here as we get a spacey record with lots of synths and vocals. The guitar takes a back seat to the two keyboardists but the drums are so upfront.

The cover art is something I'll keep quiet about but I'm not a fan. I was really surprised the first time I put this on and heard the start of "The Voice Of Beauty Drowned" as Stephen and the sound reminded me of PENDRAGON after 1 1/2 minutes following a spacey intro. More depth after two minutes and here the vocals bring Bruce Soord to mind. Themes are repeated and we get a flute led instrumental section after 4 1/2 minutes. A change after 6 1/2 minutes as synths solo over the beats and more. Organ after 8 minutes then back to vocals. Not into those vocal harmonies at all after 9 minutes. Poppy stuff. There's more of this later in the record.

"The Fallen Angel" is my least favourite of these three long tracks. The vocals 2 minutes in when it all gets more passionate are difficult for me. At first they are fragile with percussion and spacey sounds. I do like the canterbury organ at 5 1/2 minutes and before 7 minutes. Not big on the lyrics here either. Vocals are more like Tim Bowness when they return before 8 minutes. Catchy stuff before 10 1/2 minutes with vocals but I'm just not into it. The closer is "Barbarella's Lover" and it begins with piano and mellow vocals. Not sure about this. It kicks in with upfront drums and more passionate vocals. Percussion and atmosphere only at 3 1/2 minutes. Hey some guitar at 5 1/2 minutes. So refreshing but the drums dominate. Tim Bowness like vocals after 9 1/2 minutes but he sounds more like Edward Ka-Spel late.

Most seem to be huge fans of this record so consider my words with a grain of salt as they say. This just isn't my music.

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