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Mechanical Poet

Progressive Metal

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Mechanical Poet Woodland Prattlers album cover
3.82 | 52 ratings | 8 reviews | 35% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2004

Songs / Tracks Listing

Disc I (21:57) "Handmade Essence" - 2003/2004
1. Handmade Essence (3:49)
2. Frozen Nile (4:44)
3. Hermetical Orchard (5:50)
4. Clue of a Scarecrow (3:57)
5. Clockwork Shrimps (1:24)
6. Waltzing Skip-Jack (2:13)

Disc II (50:00) "Woodland Prattlers" - 2004
1. Main Titles (1:39)
2. Stormchild (4:21)
3. Bogie in a Coal-Hole (5:48)
4. Sirens from the Underland (4:00)
5. Will O' the Wisp (2:02)
6. Strayed Moppet (3:43)
7. Old Years' Merry Funeral (6:41)
8. Natural Quaternion (11:11)
9. Shades on a Casement (3:38)
10. Swamp-Stamp Polka (2:57)
11. End Credits (4:00)

Total Time: 71:57

Line-up / Musicians

- Max Samosvat / vocals
- Lex Plotnikoff / guitars, bass, keyboards
- Tom Tokmakoff / drums, bass, keyboards

Releases information

2CD Aural Music (2004)
Format: limited edition Slipcase double-CD (777 copies)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
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MECHANICAL POET Woodland Prattlers ratings distribution

(52 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(35%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(38%)
Good, but non-essential (19%)
Collectors/fans only (8%)
Poor. Only for completionists (0%)

MECHANICAL POET Woodland Prattlers reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by semismart
5 stars The Russians are Coming

I suppose it was inevitable that sooner or later I would find a nifty Russian band or they would find me. Well folks whichever it is, let's talk about Mechanical Poet. That's what I said, Mechanical Poet. The name may be funny but these guys play some great music. 2005 has not been a banner year so far, for music in my book and the Woodland Pratters may be the best if not the most interesting album I've heard up until now. What can I say I'm breathless. Imagination just exudes from these guys. I've got imagination all over me, I can't get the imagination off of me. Excuse my while I go take a shower.

Phew, that's better. Sorry but I can't stand to have so much imagination on me. It's stifling. I wish I could tell you more about these three guys, yeah, there's only three but I can't even find out their last names. Anyway I did find a bio on their web site : , so If you're interested you can look it up there.. MECHANICAL POET, Woodland Pratters

Yeah I know, they have a funny name but trust me, the music is special and some mention of the CD booklet is in order. Ahaaa, I did find their last names, well two anyway, Lex Plotnikoff and Tom Tokmakoff, and there's Max, his last name is Samovar (not as bad as I suspected). My God looking for their names was like looking for Waldo. Getting back to the booklet, it's done in cartoon strip form, you know with the lyrics in clouds, and for you out their that don't read or speak Russian, the Mechanical Poets were thinking of you because the lyrics are in English.

So what kind of music is Woodland Pratters? Well I find it incredibly hard to describe. I guess you could say it's basis is traditional, symphonic progressive, with theatrical overtones, combined with an occasional dose of medium to hard rocking segments and full songs. An example is the captivating, instrumental movie score style introduction, which suddenly segues into a solid aggressive metal number - "Storm Child". All of the songs that have vocals are sung by woodland creatures (real or imaginary). "Storm Child" is performed by Harpies, with lyrics like these; "Lightnings! The flaring claws, Tight strings, Of typhoon's bows. Whiz, rave, howl, The insatiable storm! Shrill, laugh, growl, Like demoniac swarm!" Another energetic rock song is track 6 - "Strayed Moppet", sung by a little Zombie. The song does slow down a bit in the middle but it's mostly well done grinding rock. Here is part of the catchy chorus: "Strayed! I'm lost again inside the Backwoods of the sylvan maze " I failed! It's all in vain." "Swamp-Swamp Polka", is also an upbeat rock piece, though in a humorous vein, sung by Swamp Trolls.

Tracks 5 & 11 "Will O' the Wisp" and "End Credits", are also instrumentals not unlike the opening track, Danny Elfman style, score like pieces.

Of varying degrees, the remaining songs follow the orchestra backed Symphonic/Progressive format, featuring several different vocalists and a wide assortment of instruments. "Boogie In a Coal-Hole", is a dramatic, harmonious varied pace number, sung by a Bogie. "Sirens From the Underland" is a solemn, almost dirge like piece with pleasant lyrics sung by the Earth folk "Lay your head on a feathery moss. Freeze your mind and drown in doss. See the places you have never been. Let the magic begin" "Old Year's Merry Funeral", my favorite, starts out as a plucky rocker but swiftly diverges to lush symphonic elements and varies style and tempo throughout. This is the most eclectic number and resembles Trans Siberian Orchestra on the choruses: "Needless, outdated, feckless, antiquated. I was welcomed like a King and left as a broken thing. Dying, hopeless, desolated, crying, doomed, alienated". It is sung by A Dying Year. "Natural Quaternion", at over eleven minutes, is the longest song on the album. It is however, divided into four parts, for four different woodland creatures - Sylphs, Gnomes, Undines and Salamanders. It is like "Old Year's Merry Funeral" Melodic/Progressive with orchestral and choir backing and different lead singers. "Shades on a Casement" is an easy going but elegantly captive Art/Rock ballad sung by the Foresters Cadet.

Song/Track List

[.1.] Main Titles ***** [.2.] Storm child ***** (Performed by the Harpies) [.3.] Bogie In A Coal-Hole **** (Performed by a Bogie) [.4.] Sirens From The Underland **** (Performed by the Earthfolk) [.5.] Will O' The Wisp **** [.6.] Strayed Moppet **** (Performed by a Little Zombie) [.7.] Old Year's Merry Funeral ***** (Performed by a Dying Year) [.8.] Natural Quaternion ***** (Performed by the Elements) [.9.] Shades On A Casement ***** (Performed by a Forester's Cadet) [10] Swamp-Stamp-Polka ***** (Performed by the Swamp Trolls) [11] End Credits *****


I Like these guys. Not just for their music but for their attitude. These guys want to make music their way but they want to have fun doing it and by God everything about this album, screams FUN.

Just listen to the very last thing written in the album booklet, in insurance company small print I might add. "And many many thanks to all those strange beautiful people who found our demo CD somewhere and listened to it gladly, sent us all these touching emails, wrote all these great comments in our guest book and praised an absolutely unknown weird Russian band on the discussion boards. Perhaps you don't even know how needful and inspiring it was for us. we've done our best composing, arranging, recording, mixing, and producing this album - mostly because of you. "

Yes these are my kind of guys and this is a most enjoyable album.

Bottom line is this is a feel good album.


This review is only for the single disc version of Woodland Pratters.

Similar Bands

Savatage/TransSiberian Orchestra, Blind Guardian, Helloween

Review by Prog-jester
2 stars At first,I'm NOT a fan of Prog Metal,but sometimes I enjoy some classical releases.Second:I'm NOT quite sure,that Mechanical Poet is prog.Tobe honest,I'm Not sure at all.If they're prog ,then Iron Maiden is prog too..well,this discussion is doomed and hopeless from the very beginning.OK,I surrender,they're Prog - as you wish.Anyway,I'd prefer Blind Guardian from such style as POWER metal,where MechPoet is related more than to prog.I've noticed total absence of original ideas with great producing work - well,good soundproducing doesn't makes the whole album.I heard EPIDEMIA,the main band of Lex & Max,and Russian metal opera ELFIYSKAYA RUKOPIS (,and all this stuff worth 2/3 stars,really.I don't even want to give'em 4 stars just because they're from Russia...Russia have also AVTOGRAF & NYL,more talented bands,IMHO.If you're Prog/Power fan,you may try it,but I'm NOT sure that you'll find something outstanding here.An overrated CD,IMHO
Review by b_olariu
3 stars Let there be not doubt, this three guys from Russia kick ass, from the first note to the last. I was surprised but in the same time pleased to have in my colection a band from winter fields. And what an album, full of joy, positive attitude, and most important not boring. I give 3 stars because i really enjoy listen to Mechanical Poet, is something else. Forte tracks are Strayed Moppet (3:43) and Old Years' Merry Funeral (6:41). Highly recommended and another band with creativity to share , If you want something different, then add to your colection Mechanical Poet! I forget, the cover is superb and shows what is on the album. Bottom line is this is a feel good album.
Review by jampa17
4 stars A perfect Tim Burton movie soundtrack... This guys are dramatic and plays loud man... just great...

First, I'm not giving these 4 stars because their'e russians... I'm a devoted fan from Prog Metal and ussually find that most the bands I like end up being fans of Dream Theater... well... As long as I am a devoted fan from Dream Theater, is nice to find fresh ideas -or at least different- from what we heard day by day.... and this album, and whole their discography is quite impressive...

Now, I understand that some people could not like all the different moods and styles they use... they are too much dramatic and developes many different ambients through the main prog metal riffs... Is an interest task to put attention to... and I'm really pleased I discover this band... Is very strange, almost surreal... but I enjoy it....

Production and perfoming is quite impressive... great... 5 stars without doubt... but you may be left a little confused at the end... because there's too much to listen to... maybe they change too fast the mood and you are not prepared for that... I say you give it a try... is very interesting, and their'e not that heavy if that scares you... their most like a Rock Opera... a lot of classic -properly classic- influences with symphonic passages and strange vibes through the whole piece...

Try it... is fresh, moody, odd and surreal... great... really great...

Latest members reviews

5 stars This is the album, which changed my opinion on Russian metal bands. At first time I was shocked & was greatly surprised, when I found out that this band is from russia (I assumed Finland or English-speaking country). It's a pity, we can not visit their concert because they have broken apart. But ... (read more)

Report this review (#68834) | Posted by | Thursday, February 9, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars When I see this band, here in ProgArchives I just download for curiosity... But when I hear the song "Bogie In A Coal-Hole"... Whoa, I had a big surprise... I had this same surprise when I meet "Circus Maximus" here in ProgArchives too, and even with my bad english I come here give my review ... (read more)

Report this review (#47727) | Posted by | Thursday, September 22, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I could never dream that Russsian band can do THIS... Their recording in Russia made a big sensation last years... I can't compare them with other progers... It is such unique... But, if you interesting, these three guys(now in band only three membersб but they spend much time to find an ... (read more)

Report this review (#45101) | Posted by Flash Gordon | Thursday, September 1, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Since Belarus, the country I live in, is not far from Russia at all, I'm quite aware of all musical events happening there. No wonder I knew of MECHANICAl POET even before the release of Woodland Prattlers. So I invaded a local musical shop the day the album was released - and I was not disapp ... (read more)

Report this review (#44797) | Posted by Vaxis | Tuesday, August 30, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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