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HOUSE OF USHER

Eclectic Prog • United States


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House of Usher biography
The music of this five-piece set from Detroit evokes the contrasted, nuanced and measured prog of CIRCUS or TERRACED GARDEN, with expressive vocals alternately tortured and controlled, somewhere between FISH and Peter HAMMILL. They create melodic symphonic prog with lots of tempo and mood changes. In addition to releasing their own cd, they appeared on an ELP tribute album in 1998.

"Body of Mind" is an interesting vocal-oriented concept album mixing GENESIS and KING CRIMSON sounds with elements of jazz, classical and world music. It features rich keyboard sounds with Wakeman-type arpeggios and some flashy (and occasionally heavy) guitar work à la Steve Hackett which is kept under control for the duration of the album. The compositions are a bit linear but the arrangements and musicianship are quite impressive. Perhaps not the finest production but certainly commendable for a self-produced first album.

May be of interest to fans of GENESIS, KING CRIMSON, CAMEL, ELP.

: : : Lise (HIBOU), CANADA : : :

House of Usher official website

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HOUSE OF USHER discography


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HOUSE OF USHER top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.33 | 4 ratings
Body of Mind
1998

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HOUSE OF USHER Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Body of Mind  by HOUSE OF USHER album cover Studio Album, 1998
3.33 | 4 ratings

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Body of Mind
House of Usher Eclectic Prog

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

3 stars From the depth of obscurity comes this band from USA - House of Usher with one album released in 1998 named Body of mind. The band and implicit the album gone unnoticed in prog circles and today is a very hard to find CD. A self-financed and self-produced release but with some great moments overall. The music is quite dark in atmosphere and relies more on vocal department where Aaron done a good job, he has a very good voice , deep and fits perfectly into this kind of music. Aswell the instrumental sections are more then ok, in some parts even excellent that means the musicianship is strong most of the time. With influences from Camel or even Pink Floyd, even some neo prog hints can be found here, Body of mind is quite great in my view. Forte pieces, Don't remember me, the short two instrumental tracks, first Timneh who is entirecly constructed on acustical guitar and 911 where is only piano but very strong and elegant piece to me ears, and the longest C'est pas fini can be considered the best track of the album, where the excellent keyboards passages are melted in avery original, smooth and elegant way with the guitar chops, really nice tune. All in all even is a forgotten and overlooked band, this album needs attention from prog listners, is truly an eclectic prog album where the music and vocal arrangements show potential, but with all that they gone into oblivion shortly after the release of the album. 3.5 stars for sure. Very good the cover art, made by artist Scott Fray, mhystical and dark, like the booklet aswell.

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 Body of Mind  by HOUSE OF USHER album cover Studio Album, 1998
3.33 | 4 ratings

BUY
Body of Mind
House of Usher Eclectic Prog

Review by kenethlevine
Special Collaborator Prog-Folk Team

3 stars A name like "House of Usher" has associations with Edgar Allan Poe and his famous tale, and as a result casts my mind back to the Alan Parsons project's debut album. While this is not a bad reference point for the sole album put forth by this band, they have a more modern neo-prog sound at times reminiscent of IQ.

What really hurts this album is the muddy production, so it does best when conveying a dark gothic atmosphere in which this shortcoming becomes an advantage , such as in the opener "Faith", "Don't Remind me", the piano dominated instrumental "911", the superb guitar solo that round outs "C'est Pas Fini Part 2", and "C'est Pas Fini Part 3". Aaron's voice seems especially well designed for songs in which each syllable is individually pronounced, almost as if English is not his first language. But in "Obsession" and "Bewildered Serenity", the atmosphere seems secondary to the message that the band is attempting to convey, and that message is lost in the morasse.

This is a decent album from a band that apparently came and went, rounded up to three stars since so little of even this admittedly second tier calibre even comes out of the US.

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 Body of Mind  by HOUSE OF USHER album cover Studio Album, 1998
3.33 | 4 ratings

BUY
Body of Mind
House of Usher Eclectic Prog

Review by Greger
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Two mysterious blue eyes are looking back at you from the album cover artwork of HOUSE OF USHER's self-financed debut CD. Artist Scott Fray makes the great cover artwork. It's hard to compare HOUSE OF USHER to any other band. They are blending symphonic neo-progressive rock with influences from classical, fusion, jazz and world music, often with many time changes. Their music is a mix between CAMEL, EMERSON, LAKE & PALMER, GENESIS, GENTLE GIANT, KING CRIMSON, MARILLION, PENDRAGON, PINK FLOYD and YES but with a sound of the '90's. The whole band is showing great musicianship, with the keyboard player Richard Kaczynski as the best.

The highlights are "Don't Remind Me", the acoustic "Timneh", "Obsession" and the closing "C'est Pas Finit" which is the best song on this album.

The only negative thing is that the mixing of the album could've been better and more dynamic. But as this is a self-financed and self-produced release you shouldn't expect too much. All in all it's a very good album.

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