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BELLAPHON

Neo-Prog • Japan


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Bellaphon biography
Formed in 1981, this instrumental band from Japan who delivers a symphonic / melodic music, highly influenced by CAMEL, but some fusion passages can be found as well.

The band included Taiqui Tomiie , Toshihiro Tanaka and Mitsutaka Kaki who served time on the prog band Ain Soph. the keyboardist Mitsutaka Kaki is trying to keep the band alive currently, playing shows mainly, but as he states, this is a side occupation of the band members who are all doing this along their day jobs.

Their CD "Firefly" is an excellent piece of symphonic prog. The music sometimes sounds like CAMEL or AIN SOPH and KENSO because of its delicate and highly elaborated symphonism with a touch of virtuoso and elegant jazz-rock. Delphi contains unreleased tracks and some live recordings.

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Buy BELLAPHON Music


FireflyFirefly
Import
Musea Records France 2001
Audio CD$59.75
$61.50 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
BELLAPHON FIREFLY VERY RARE JAPAN PROG PRIVATE LP CAMEL PAGEANT FINCH AIN SOPH USD $39.88 Buy It Now 39m 53s
KISS - RARE - ACE FREHLEY - BELLAPHON GERMANY USD $10.00 Buy It Now 7h 48m
DRIFTERS CARAVAN "NASHVILLE MEETS GERMANY" BELLAPHON & SIGNED BY DENNIS HUGHEY USD $29.99 Buy It Now 9h 56m
All' Lust und Freud' CD Bellaphon Japan for Europe 1983 with blue face Sanyo USD $14.99 Buy It Now 11h 18m
Johnny Cash and the Tennessee Two Golden Hits Vol 1 CD (1985, Japan, Bellaphon) USD $10.30 Buy It Now 11h 34m
OMEGA-OMEGA LP 1975 BELLAPHON USD $18.72 Buy It Now 12h 32m
KIM GOODY wait in line 7" WS EX/ uk bellaphon USD $10.92 Buy It Now 16h 44m
Isis - Isis (CD, 1988, Bellaphon Records, German INDIE) VERY RARE USD $49.99 Buy It Now 19h 23m
Sunday Night London Roundhouse NEKTAR 1988 Bellaphon GERMAN Import PROGRESSIVE USD $23.99 Buy It Now 20h 12m
Survivor Vital Signs German Cassette Tape Bellaphon ?- 460-14-030 USD $4.99 Buy It Now 21h 51m
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@ CD Mountain - Go For Your Life RARE BELLAPHON 1985 ORG (MADE IN JAPAN) USD $39.99 Buy It Now 1 day
DAZZ BAND Keep It Live MOTOWN LP 1982 Made In Germany Bellaphon 1982 Original USD $15.00 Buy It Now 1 day
Risky Blues (Various) - 1976 - Bellaphon Records / Rare Bid ?- BID 8026 USD $5.45 [0 bids]
1 day
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Omega - Omega III..'74 Hungarian prog..1st press..Bellaphon..RARE USD $99.99 Buy It Now 2 days
The McCoys- Hang on Sloopy..'91 W. Germany CD..Bellaphon USD $11.99 Buy It Now 2 days
Jackie Wilson LP You Got Me Walking Bellaphon 19085 German USD $2.26 Buy It Now 2 days
WYOMING IN PRISON - GERMAN PRESS - 1972 BELLAPHON BLPS19079 EXCELLENT CONDITION USD $24.97 Buy It Now 2 days
Bethanee Bishop - I Want You (CD, 1995, Bellaphon, German Indie) RARE USD $41.99 Buy It Now 2 days
Neil Diamond "Double Gold" (Bellaphon) (2) USD $8.99 Buy It Now 3 days
KIN PING MEH-st/megarare German Krautrock/1st press Bellaphon/U.F.O./SABBATH USD $39.99 Buy It Now 3 days
Van Morrison S/T Bellaphon German 1st Press ARCHIVE MASTER Ultrasonic Cleaned! USD $39.20 Buy It Now 3 days
PASCAL DANEL kilimandscharo - jeanne 7" VG+ BELLAPHON 100 07 160 Vinyl 1980 USD $22.50 Buy It Now 3 days
Ooh I like It by Left Lane x new Bellaphon 12" Disco USD $9.95 Buy It Now 3 days
976 . by Club D-two near mint Bellaphon 12" Rock USD $9.95 Buy It Now 3 days
Fix It In The Mix by Phonosexuals near mint Bellaphon 12" Electronic USD $9.95 Buy It Now 3 days
Pump Up The Motown by Bassix near mint Bellaphon 12" Electronic USD $9.95 Buy It Now 3 days
JOSHUA BREAKSTONE Remembering Grant Green Bellaphon USD $20.79 Buy It Now 3 days
Triumph - Rock N' Roll Machine LP German Bellaphon 260 07 035 USD $4.24 Buy It Now 3 days
Chi-Lites-A Letter to Myself LP 1973 GERMAN Import Bellaphon BLPS19152 EX/VG+ USD $9.95 Buy It Now 3 days
Creedence Clearwater Revival Pendulum 1971 Germany Bellaphon Gatefold LP VG USD $9.00 Buy It Now 3 days
Nektar - Down To Earth CD BELLAPHON USD $26.69 Buy It Now 4 days
BUDDY KNOX BELLAPHON 40168 ROULETTE ALBUM ROCKABILLY USD $11.99 [1 bids]
4 days
Captain Hollywood - Do that thang (CD,Single,1993,Bellaphon) USD $8.25 Buy It Now 4 days
NEIL DIAMOND Shilo LP 12" VINYL Stereo BELLAPHON Germany 1970 BLPS 19009 @Exlnt USD $18.66 Buy It Now 4 days
Tommy James - The Tommy James History 2 xLP NM- German Bellaphon BLS 5518 USD $9.99 [0 bids]
4 days
Electric Silence by Dzyan (CD, Oct-1993, Bellaphon) USD $8.50 Buy It Now 4 days
Woody Herman: Woody's Gold Star ~ New CD (Concord Jazz/Bellaphon (West Germany)) USD $20.95 Buy It Now 4 days
RAMSEY LEWIS - BEST OF - BELLAPHON 2xLP 'Wade in the Water/Back in the USSR USD $9.35 Buy It Now 4 days
NEKTAR-...SOUND LIKE THIS-BELLAPHON 290-09-003-WEST GERMANY MINT CD USD $27.98 Buy It Now 4 days
1997 "THE VERY BEST OF THE MONKEES" 2-CD EDITION BY BELLAPHON RECORDS IN EU USD $23.60 Buy It Now 4 days
Flora Purim Love Reborn vinyl LP album record German 2611003 BELLAPHON 1980 USD $21.78 Buy It Now 4 days
Horizon McCoy Tyner vinyl LP album record German 2611001 BELLAPHON 1980 USD $21.78 Buy It Now 4 days
Various-Pop Rock The World German vinyl LP album record 254.07.149 BELLAPHON USD $20.22 Buy It Now 5 days
NINE DAYS' WONDER Sonnet to Billy Feast 1976 GERMAN BELLAPHON LP NM USD $39.99 Buy It Now 5 days
Bellaphon Die Flippers "My Darling Du Allein" Old 5-Person Line-Up 1995 NIB USD $12.05 Buy It Now 5 days
ALLEN FARNHAM 5th House CD 10 Track West German Pressing GERMAN Bellaphon 1990 USD $7.79 Buy It Now 5 days
DATA Fall Out 7" B/w Politics Pic Sleeve UK Bellaphon 1980 USD $5.68 Buy It Now 5 days
BLACK LACE Agadoo 7" B/w Fiddling Pic Sleeve GERMAN Bellaphon 1984 USD $7.79 Buy It Now 5 days
KIM GOODY Wait In Line 7" Solid Label Design B/w Taken In Again UK Bellaphon 19 USD $5.68 Buy It Now 5 days
LUXURIA Redneck 7" B/w She's Your Lover No Pic Sleeve GERMAN Bellaphon 1988 USD $7.79 Buy It Now 5 days
MELANIE Dance To The Music 7" B/w What Do I Keep Pic Sleeve GERMAN Bellaphon 19 USD $7.79 Buy It Now 5 days
MESS Sonntag 7" B/w Honey Bee Pic Sleeve GERMAN Bellaphon 1982 USD $7.79 Buy It Now 5 days
PETER WELCH Lou Lou Banana King 7" B/w Hitparade Marmelade UK Bellaphon 1980 USD $5.68 Buy It Now 5 days
CHARLIE RICH Best Of LP 11 Track GERMAN Bellaphon USD $7.79 Buy It Now 5 days
CHUCK BERRY Original Oldies Vol 2 LP 12 Track GERMAN Bellaphon USD $7.79 Buy It Now 5 days
EPSILON S/t LP 8 Track With Download Released 06/04/15 EUROPEAN Bellaphon 2015 USD $41.21 Buy It Now 5 days
HEADHUNTER S/t LP 11 Track With Download Released 06/04/15 EUROPEAN Bellaphon USD $41.21 Buy It Now 5 days
JOHN LEE HOOKER Real Blues LP 10 Track GERMAN Bellaphon USD $26.22 Buy It Now 5 days
MORTY Love Blind LP 10 Track Sticker Tear On The Sleeve UK Bellaphon 1980 USD $7.79 Buy It Now 5 days
POP TOPS-HIDEWAY/WHAT A PLACE TO LIVE IN-ORIGINAL GERMAN PS 45rpm 1972-BELLAPHON USD $9.99 Buy It Now 5 days
CAPTAIN HOLLYWOOD (project) Do That Thang CD GERMAN IMPORT Rap BELLAPHON -1990- USD $21.50 Buy It Now 5 days
HOWLIN' WOLF - THE BACK DOOR WOLF LP EX!!! ORIGINAL GERMANY BELLAPHON BLPS 19173 USD $31.22 Buy It Now 5 days
Cover Girls We Can't Go Wrong CD Bellaphon West Germany 290 07 137 Interpress USD $5.00 [0 bids]
5 days
Nine Days Wonder: We Never Lost Control LP Germany/Bacillus/Bellaphon, Quad USD $40.00 Buy It Now 5 days
OMEGA - THE HALL OF FLOATERS IN THE SKY HUNGARIAN PROG LP ORIGINAL BELLAPHON USD $25.00 Buy It Now 5 days
Concord Jazz Ray Brown Trio Soular Energy Audiophile 180G LP Bellaphon SEALED USD $15.50 [2 bids]
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cd B4 CHRIS HUNTER - I WANT YOU Bellaphon sound service USD $20.79 Buy It Now 5 days
BEATLES Live at The Star Club 1977 Bellaphon GF DBL LP BLS 5560 EXC- German Imp USD $17.50 Buy It Now 5 days
CREEDENCE CLEARWATER - GERMAN BELLAPHON LP BLPS 19001 USD $13.00 Buy It Now 5 days
CREEDENCE CLEARWATER GREEN RIVER BELLAPHON LP BLPS19003 USD $13.00 Buy It Now 5 days
BEATLES: Live! At The Starclub 1977 2 x LP Orig German Bellaphon BLS 5560 VG+/M- USD $24.99 Buy It Now 5 days
Vangelis Can You Hear The Dogs Barking Bellaphon 19242 Stereo 1975 Germany EX USD $26.99 Buy It Now 6 days
TALON - Neutralized 1984 Bellaphon 1.press USD $25.00 Buy It Now 6 days
JOANNE BRACKEEN WHERE LEGENDS DWELL GOMEZ DE JOHNETTE KEN BELLAPHON GERMANY RARE USD $34.99 Buy It Now 6 days
CREDENCE CLEARWATER REVIVAL 2 BELLAPHON CHRONICLE THE 20 GREATEST HISTS GERMANY USD $22.99 Buy It Now 6 days
DATA - Fallout / Politics - 7" Single Bellaphon BPS 001 1980 USD $3.90 Buy It Now 6 days
Chuck Berry's Golden Decade Bellaphon GERMANY 2 LP 6545 USD $18.00 Buy It Now 6 days
CREEDENCE CLEARWATER Pic sleeve "HAVE YOU EVER SEEN THE RAIN" on BELLAPHON USD $9.35 Buy It Now 7 days
Rare Gatefold LP Record Chuck Berry's Golden Decade Vol 2 On Bellaphon BLST 6548 USD $9.95 Buy It Now 7 days
Van Morrison ?~ T.B. Sheets ~ EX/EX ~ German Bellaphon ?~ 220-07-014 ~ A-3/B-2 USD $12.95 Buy It Now 7 days
Creedence Clearwater Revival Pendulum 1971 Germany Bellaphon gatefold LP VG+ USD $10.99 Buy It Now 7 days
Creedence Clearwater Revival Mardis Gras 1972 Germany Bellaphon LP VG+ USD $10.99 Buy It Now 7 days
Biddu orchestra dance of shiva CD BELLAPHON USD $9.99 Buy It Now 7 days
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OMEGA TIME ROBBER -LP-PORTUGAL 1976-EXL -BELLAPHON IMAVOX 30032 USD $9.99 Buy It Now 8 days
High'N Dry - Hands Off My Toy! CD 1986 Interpress Bellaphon USD $169.00 Buy It Now 8 days
Data 7" vinyl single record Fallout UK BPS001 BELLAPHON RECORDS 1980 USD $17.10 Buy It Now 8 days
SHANNON - Let The Music Play - RARE German Bellaphon CD Album Made in Japan USD $69.99 Buy It Now 8 days
DOUG CLIFFORD - doug cosmo clifford 1972 LP Germany bellaphon NM USD $19.20 Buy It Now 8 days
KARTHAGO Live At The Roxy 2x LP 1976 Bellaphon Records EX [German krautrock] USD $35.00 Buy It Now 8 days
Pete Seeger Bellaphon 4068 Mint- German Press USD $10.80 Buy It Now 8 days
Journey to the Centre of the Eye by Nektar MINT CD Bellaphon WEST GERMANY USD $29.98 Buy It Now 8 days
WHISPERS BELLAPHON 002 SHHHH VG/M- GERMAN $60.00 USD $60.00 Buy It Now 8 days
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BELLAPHON discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

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

3.70 | 19 ratings
Firefly
1987
2.63 | 11 ratings
Delphi
1995

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

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

BELLAPHON Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

BELLAPHON Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

4.50 | 2 ratings
Labyrinth
1985

BELLAPHON Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Firefly by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1987
3.70 | 19 ratings

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Firefly
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by maryes

3 stars Clearly inpired by the music of the British band CAMEL, "Firefly" from Japanese band BELLAPHON shows an unusual prog rock for the most of bands from that country, like TERU'S SYMPHONY (whit his heavy and more theatrical style) or KENSO ( and their fantastic and full of virtuosity Jazz-Prog) for mention some of most famous. The album is totally instrumental, and the melody is very mellow. In some moments they incorporated some jazz elements in Jean-Luc Ponty and moods or something like that and some Symphonic "atmospheres" ( a very good example from this affirmations as in track 5 " Vent Du Midi" ). The track 6 " Evros" show a few heavy moments. In spite this variations the music is very close to CAMEL and the album don't reserve so much surprises. Due this considerations my rate is only 3 stars !!!

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 Delphi by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1995
2.63 | 11 ratings

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Delphi
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer

2 stars This album is made of unreleased tracks and a live one.

For the ones who have listened to their "Firefly" album, I would say that this one is less interesting except during the longest number ("Fragments of Biotape Suite ? Firefly") which combines aerial and symphonic keyboards with wild electric guitar. This was much the case in their debut; and at times I could compare the guitar sounds with the ones from Carlos Santana.

The third track "No Guarded City" is fully jazz oriented, with here again some crazy guitar. Still, the whole sounds loose and more of an improvisation (it was recorded live). Not my cup of tea as you might know.

Symphonic instrumental lovers will probably appreciate this work: keyboards especially are well played and some "Genesis" relation can be felt while "Overture - La Nouva?" is being played. Even if the drum solo was probably not necessary.

I think that this album doesn't make a lot of sense.

Some lost "jewels" that could have remained in the drawer as far as I'm concerned. It is better to stick with their first album (which I rated with four stars). This one can hardly compete (as it is often the case with such releases). Five out of ten, but rounded down to two stars.

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 Firefly by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1987
3.70 | 19 ratings

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Firefly
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Truly symphonic and amazingly complex, this Japanese band is quite interesting. Of course, you have to appreciate instrumental music but this is not a problem since the tracks performed here are quite well structured and nicely played.

Some sort of "Camel" but more intricate even if "Le Petit Prince" is totally faithful to their model. Most of the songs have a French title which is quite surprising. "Mistral" is the name of a wind which blows in the Mediterranean (from inland towards the sea, which has the result of cooling the water substantially). I don't see any relation though with the musical theme offered here.

Technically up to date, the musicians are quite skilled. Guitar is particularly crafted but not only. One can discover the subtle piano during the short interlude called "Belle De Jour". It is full of tact and almost classical.

Again, the guitar is splendid and fully reminiscent of the great old Carlos (Santana of course) during the poetic and brilliant "Vent Du Midi" which is the highlight IMHHO. The whole of this album is a pleasant experience. At no moment did I feel weaknesses neither in the music played nor boredom to listen to it.

"Santana" fans should really listen to this works. The genuine sound of the master during his peaks is wonderfully rendered here. The closing number and title track is truly transporting you some forty years behind (I mean 1970) and the first album of this great band (Santana, I mean). Superb and powerful organ work. As if Greg was there to hold the role?

Now, comes the rating? As a global experience, I would rate this work with seven out of ten. It is maybe due to the fact that this fully instrumental work lacks in substance at times. Anyway: this is a good album and it deserves your attention.

Let's upgrade it to four stars. I really wonder why this band was switched from symph to neo though.

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 Delphi by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1995
2.63 | 11 ratings

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Delphi
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by octopus-4
Special Collaborator RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team

2 stars If you can survive to the title track that seems the intro to a police b-movie of the 70s, you'll discover a Camel clone band. What's good in a clone? The fact that there are no many Camel clones around the world, the fact that the keyboardist is as skilled as Pete Bardens and, last but not least, the songwriting is excellent.

The first track is partially saved by a good guitar riff close to the song's end, but the track is quite boring. Survive to it.

Everything changes with "Fragments Of Biotope Suite-Firefly". It's a long track that starts with winds and subtle keyboard. Very similar to "Lunar Sea". Since now the whole album appears to be inspired to Moonmadness. Unfortunately the quality of the production is very low since now to above, but if you love Camel of the period of "A Live Record" this album can give you the same sensations. The bass seems played by Doug Ferguson and the melodic line is based on an ascending sequence that's very typical of that Camel's era. After 5 minutes we are back to "Snow goose" and this is how the song proceeds. Well, it's like listening to a Camel's forgotten album and this is how it sould be listened to. Suspend your judgement about a band that doesn't produce anything original and listen just to the music. This is how this band can be appreciated.

"No Guarded City" looks at the jazzy side of Camel (Liggin' at louis or the central section of the already mentioned Lunar Sea as reference).

"Overture-La :Nuova Citta: Di Atlantis" (why the Italian title? who knows?) is the worst recording in terms of sound quality. It seems more a studio reharsal recored on a 4-track. It's a pity because the song isn't that bad, but the sound quality makes it irritating.

"La Villette" is one of the best moments of the whole album even if just 3 minutes long. An odd tempo for the less Camel inspired track. It's still very Canterbury but it could be any other Canterbury band. Only the guitar tries to sound like Latimer.

The album is closed by "Villa dei MisterI" (another Italian title). Again the production is very poor. It would have been a very good track.

The fact that this album has been released many years after the recording says everything. Somebody in the label has found some tapes of this band and has tried to make some "money for nothing". Without the problems with the sound quality I could have rated this at least 3 stars, but the production is part of the product so I suggest it only to hard Camel fans who are addicted to this kind of music (like I am).

It's a pity, but I can give it only two stars

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 Delphi by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1995
2.63 | 11 ratings

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Delphi
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Released in 1995, many many years after the band's demise, "Delphi" is a rough, unpolished exhibition of the exquisite melodic approach to symphonic prog that Bellaphon so gracefully incarnated in the enthusiastic progressive scene that developed in Japan during the early 80s. It is a pity that this album's sound quality is so inconsistent and irregular, since you can notice that the playing is competent, the ensemble's sound is fluidly organic and the compositional ideas are tight. No way that you can appreciate it properly in thoese moments in which the sound gets really poor. I have to disagree with others' ratings for this album that go under the 3 star grade, but I can fairly see their point when they feel disappointed at this album's sound: I am too, but mostly, I intend to review this album on the music alone. Bellaphon was consistently inspired by two Camels, the one with Sinclair and the one with Watkins (the 77-81 era), as well as some elements of melodic jazz-fusion that emerge in places (something like a "symphonized" Corea, so to speak). The namesake track opens up the album with eerie, romantic moods, mainly based on the lovely synth orchestrations that carry the burden of the track's melodic scheme - their chamber orientation makes the whole instrumentation cry "symphonic!!" from the deepest corners of its "sonic lungs". Track 2 bears a more ambitious structure concernign composition and arrangements, with a noticeably dramatic effect in the motif and tempo shifts: the crystal clear cohesion that goes through the varying sections reveals quite clearly (despite the sound flaws) that the band's a tight unit, a dream come true for prog fans that saw their classic idols fade away in teh 80s one way or another in teh European market. The 14 minute span has been taken advantage of pretty well by all musicians involved. Track 4 is also an extended composition, although this time the sense of cohesion is not as well accomplished as in track 2, but all in all, it still has the merit of retaining Bellaphon's penchant for clean melodic structures and polished developments of them. Between these two epics, 'No Guarded City' happens to be one of the catchiest tracks in the album: it encapsulates a solid, evolving mixture of "Rain dances"-Camel and an inspired sort of standard neo-prog. 'La Villete' is a jazzier venture, and it is so well accomplished that its suration of less than 4 minutes feels terribly short: the main body got an efective melodic hook that, in case teh band decided to enhance it in an exploding climax, might have been mistaken as a Kenso piece. Well, things are as they are and this is all we can get from this track, which is quite good anyway. 'Villa dei Misteri' is the track that completes this album's repertoire, a tremendously colorful track that undeniably shows a joyful spirit - its musical brightness comes at odds with the irregular sound production. I think that "Delphi" is not a record in the truest sense of the word, but a testimony of the efforts that Bellaphon made to preserve the progressive flame in their country: they were talented, so they do not deserve to be forgotten at all. I give this album 3.75 stars, which is almost 4.

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 Firefly by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1987
3.70 | 19 ratings

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Firefly
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Bellaphon from Kyoto (japan) formed in 1981 - this totaly unnoticed neo prog band from late '80's did a great job here with this first album from their career. They play in vein of Camel, Deyss but with their own twist, all album is instrumental dominated by keboards of Mitsutaka Kaki. Very pleasent this album from 1987 named Firefly. Lots of great guitar chops, great key passages not far from Camel very well puted together by Toshihiro Tanaka who really knows how to interplay with the rest of the musicians and create something worthy investigate. The best piest is - Vent Du Midi - near 11 minutes of the highest class neo prog cobines with symphonic prog and even some jazzy elements addd here and there, the rest of the pieces are great aswell. I wonder why they are so unknown to prog circles this japanese, this is really a great album who desearve a wider recognition. So a good album who desearves fro me 3 stars easely, well not a masterpiece but a good and catchy album all the way. Is quite hard to find this album, but if you do, give it a try, you will not be deseppointed for sure.

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 Firefly by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1987
3.70 | 19 ratings

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Firefly
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars 80's...Harsh time for progressive rock,but not in Japan...Around 1981 another great band was formed in Kyoto,BELLAPHON.Centered around keyboardist's Mitsutaka Kaki work,the band developed through time a synth-based symphonic prog style,that ended up as an all instrumental project.BELLAPHON mainly worked as a guitar/keyboards/drums trio,although for their first release they were helped by AIN SOPH's bassist Masahiro Torikagi.''Firefly'' was released in 1987 and it's just another lost gem coming from Japan.Obviously influenced by the sound of CAMEL,BELLAPHON deliver an excellent symphonic rock album with fusion doses added here and there.Unlike energetic,powerful bands like Finch or Crucis,BELLAPHON had chosen to base their sound on grandiose keyboards,melodic ANDY LATIMER-like guitar solos,mid-tempos and carefully-arranged fusion interplays (in the vein of Japanese bands like AIN SOPH or KENSO),without being excessive.The keyboard/piano work of Kaki is the definition of a symph rock seminar!So,if you like emotional,keyboard-based melodic prog in the vein of CAMEL with a touch of fusion,then you have to go for it!A masterful underrated prog rock treasure!

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 Firefly by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1987
3.70 | 19 ratings

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Firefly
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Wow! What a marvelous instrumental record! I heard a lot about this band but I didn't have the opportunity to listen to Firefly until very recently. A friend told me they sound a lot like Camel, with some jazz and fusion thrown in for good mesure. As a big fan of Camel, I had to hear this. So I finally could get a hold of a copy of this classic exemple of the Japanese symphonic rock of the 80's. I was really curious.

I have to admit their music didn't strike me at first. The first tracks sounded too jazz rock for my taste. Ok, they do reminded me of some Camel's more jazzy moments like Lunar Sea and parts of Breathless. After repeated listenings however, I was able to grasp their intricated structures and great melodies. As only the finest prog records can do, the music grows on each listening until you became addicted to it. But the last three songs, Evros, Firefly and the bonus track Labyrinth proved to be masterpieces on the first listening: fantastic melodic journey with an incredible Latimer/Gilmour styled guitars, tasteful keyboards and a creative rhythm section. Man, those 3 tracks were worth the price of the CD! Those emotional guitar solos gave me shivers down the spine when I listened to them. It's pure joy!

Production is excellent too, with a very balanced and clear sound that enhances each instrument at the right time. And I must say those guys were very inspired by Camel, but really have developed their own style and sometimes even surpassed their masters (lsiten to the title track and see what I mean!). It is only a pity they didn't release a folow up until so many years after this one (and it seemes it was not as good, but since I didn't lsiten to it I can't really tell). But Firefly stands as one of the best prog produced in the 80's. It is a masterpiece of prog music, even if it is not that original. But, after all, who is? 5 stars with honors. Simply essential for any prog music lover.

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 Delphi by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1995
2.63 | 11 ratings

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Delphi
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by ProgLine

1 stars Strange record. It reminds me Mr Sirius 'Incridible Tour' CD. Good instrumental music but very bad quality sounding, so you can't really enjoy it.

This are mainly various live recordings between 1982 and 1986. As said in the previous review, the highlight is the longest track of the album but what is not credited is that some parts of the track are actually cover from Ain Soph's Story from a mysterious forest which is by far better (I recommend it for all Camel lovers).

So, this album is only for collectors purpose. For the the others, I just recommend Bellaphon's first album Firefly

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 Delphi by BELLAPHON album cover Studio Album, 1995
2.63 | 11 ratings

BUY
Delphi
Bellaphon Neo-Prog

Review by Prog-jester
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Musically it's very good - CAMEL, CAMEL all the way, and this release is mostly for those who always tend to see more jazzy/even Canterburish side of CAMEL's music. The highlight is 14-minutes long "Fragments Of Biotope Suite-Firefly", but other tracks like title opener and strange "Villa Dei Misteri" must be mentioned as well. The main flaw of the record is quality - hardly bearable, some tracks are taken from tapes without any mastering I guess,one track is recorded from live show and it proves the musical gift of this obscured but recommended band.If you're not afraid of low quality and love CAMEL, you must get this one immediately! Recommended!

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Thanks to Ivan_Melgar_M for the artist addition.

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