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Jazz Rock/Fusion • Belgium

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Tideline biography
Founded in Brussels, Belgium in 1971 - Lasted until around 1995 (?)

TIDELINE's music fuses elements of jazz, folk, pop, with hints of classicism that culminates in their original and unique sound of Jazzy Chamber Rock. The line up consists of Hadi Al Gammal (lead vocals, 12 string acoustic), Christian Gilbert (drums), Didier De Roos (keyboards, acoustic guitar, background vocals) and Sam Mackinney (basses). It is hard to draw any direct comparisons to the band; you can see touches of TERRACED GARDEN and even parts of MACHIAVEL, another Belgium group.

Throughout their long career they only released two albums. "The Crowed Room" (79) was their first. The sound is driven by the ever-present 12 string guitar and multilayered keyboards; boasting simple but colourful arrangements with English lyrics. The fragile vocals at times can give hint of Greg Lake. In short this is an outstanding album. It was to be another 16 years until their next album "Siren Songs" (1995) was to come out. It followed in similar footsteps to "The Crowed Room". This album was performed by a duet, along side a large line-up (Clarinet, Flute, Saxophone, Trumpet, Flugelhorn, and Violin). In total, sixteen musicians played on the album, including Daniel Denis (Univers Zero). Their short songs are fully of complexity, with strong touches of warmth and melody.

I highly recommend this band, especially their first album. If melodic laid back Prog is what you are looking for you should not stray past Tideline.

Written by Black Velvet

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TIDELINE discography

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TIDELINE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.54 | 9 ratings
The Crowded Room
2.33 | 3 ratings
Siren Song

TIDELINE Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

TIDELINE Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Crowded Room by TIDELINE album cover Studio Album, 1979
4.54 | 9 ratings

The Crowded Room
Tideline Jazz Rock/Fusion

Review by BrufordFreak
Collaborator Heavy Prog Team

5 stars Neo Prog Psych Folk from Belgium! With a lead vocalist that sounds like DEPECHE MODE's Dave Gahan (a year before there was a Depeche Mode)! Why has no one heard of this AMAZING album and this amazing singer- songwriter and band???

1. "Seasons" (4:52) 12-string guitar and Hadi Al Gammal's vocal open the song and sing a verse before the full band joins in during the first chorus. Nice, pleasant music with an overall uplifting feel to it. The melodies feel familiar from smooth jazz pop songs. (8.25/10)

2. "Presence" (3:20) a slightly more operatic singing style with piano accompaniment opens this one before heavily treated bass, drums join in. It could almost be Michael Bubl' or Andy Tillison (and with special similarities to Andy's music as The Tangent). (8.5/10)

3. "The crowded room" (4:32) 12-string guitar with multi-layered Morrissey/Dave Gahan-like vocals singing folk-like harmonies is soon joined by bass and drums and later interspersed with sections of piano soli and reversed piano chords. There is a nice, melodic bass solo in the third minute then a Moogie solo over bouncy Fender Rhodes in the fourth. Nice song. (9/10)

4. "Behind an open door" (3:10) finger picking acoustic guitar as Hadi sings solo over the top. Very folk-like--quite similar to the sound and sensibilities of Harmonium founder Serge Fiori as well as Scotsman Roddy Frame (Aztec Camera), though the bongos and acoustic guitar solo to finish are more like AMERICA. (9/10)

5. "Fields" (2:41) solo piano with Hadi singing over the top. This sounds so much like Peter Gabriel with a smoother voice like the that of the late great Robbie Wilson, lead singer of Autumn Chorus. (4.5/5)

6. "Dusty rehearsals" (3:40) piano jazz like ANDY TILLISON, BILLY JOEL, or TOM POWERS. Gorgeous song though not really proggy. (9/10)

7. "Painting your story" (5:53) wistful piano jazz is soon joined by acoustic guitar, bass and drums. Hadi's powerful, dulcet voice doesn't enter until 90 seconds in. Again Morrissey and Andy Tillison come to mind. It feels very much like an AL STEWART song. (8.75/10)

8. "As usual" (4:00) intricate AL STEWART-like acoustic guitar work with full band support and, later, excellent harmonizing background vocals create this nice STRAWBS-STEELY DAN-feeling song. My favorite song on the album. (10/10)

9. The club (4:18) piano and 12-string in equal measures open this one before drums and chunky bass join in. A beautifully melodic soundscape is produced every which way this band turns. Synth "recorder" solos over the top in the second minute. At 1:45 a chordal structure is set up for Hadi to sing in his emotionally gorgeous voice. This is like the best psych folk rock of the 1960s--The Association or Love or Strawberry Alarm Clock or My other favorite song on this increasingly impressive album! (10/10)

10. Locked (3:19) a far more electrified, acid-rock side of the band--definitely harkening straight back to the psychedelia of the late 1960s. This song is so different from everything that has come so far that I'm quite taken back--but, at the same time, fully impressed! The band definitely pulls it off--with flying colors! (9/10)

11. Portsmouth (3:17) acoustic nylon string guitar is quickly joined by 12-string in this medieval display of folk finger picking. Recorder (sounds real to me) appears to ply a melody before the band launches into a Celtic folk-sounding tune. Man! Is there anything these guys can't do? (9/10)

Total Time: 43:02

The songwriting, lyrics, musicianship, and sound reproduction are all top notch. I love the keys, the guitars, the drums, but most of all, the bass playing and, of course, vocals.

A-/five stars; a minor masterpiece of eclectic prog folk with a tinge of psychedelia; an excellent addition to any prog lover's music collection and a fine display of folk-like acoustic guitar work with outstanding vocals from leader/chief songwriter Hadi Al Hammal. If only for the voice (though the music is great, too) check out this band to hear the sadly unknown treasure that is Hadi Al Hammal.

Thanks to ProgLucky for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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