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THE TANGENT

Eclectic Prog • Multi-National


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The Tangent biography
THE TANGENT is a project originally formed by Andy Tillison, Guy Manning and Sam Baine of PARALLEL OR 90 DEGREES [Po90] as well as half of THE FLOWER KINGS including Jonas Reingold, Zoltan Csorsz and guitar virtuoso and former KAIPA member Roine Stolt. Of course to put further icing on the cake David Jackson of VAN DER GRAFF GENERATOR would lend his legendary sax to the band for their debut album. This started out as a mere project and was actually intended to be a Tillison solo effort before it became a full fledged band as Tillison felt the need to produce something more typically 'prog' than he'd been doing in Po90. Of course it has to be noted that this really is Andy Tillison's affair since over the years the entire roster (spare Tillison and Manning) has been changed due to many different circumstances, which has really not affected the supergroup as many would expect. Often asked about his changing line up, Tillison responds by saying that it's all part of a prog band's life and fans of the genre know all about line-up changes by now. THE TANGENT is quite a dynamic band in terms of line up even now as they recruit several members of BEARDFISH onto their team, having been impressed by them on the "Not As Good As The Book" tour. This does make for a very dynamic sound which leaves the band with a fresh angle for each album. Often touted as a 'retro' band thanks to their old school sound, the band does have a very 'classic' prog feel to them with Tillison's prominent synths. THE TANGENT has often been compared to YES and KING CRIMSON in style because of the mixture of Light and Dark with Stolt and Tillison (respectively) at the helm of the project. Highly melodic and very inclined to write sprawling epics THE TANGENT should satisfy the tastes of any prog listener who wants to go back to the roots of the genre while maintaining a contemporary message and feel.

Their music is often cynical as Tillison has often been seen as 'the dark horse' of the modern progressive scene, his lyrics often poking fun at modern music and tendencies as shown in every one of their albums, but especially "The Music That Died Alone" and their newest effort to date, "Not As Good As The Book", which is a largely sarcastic and cynical look at the world that turned out to be not as good as we thought it would be. heir second effort, "The World That We Drive Through" continued the band's approach as on their first one but without the help of David Jackson on the sax. The fi...
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Down and out in Paris and LondonDown and out in Paris and London
Inside Out U.S. 2009
Audio CD$4.29
$3.45 (used)
Le Sacre Du TravailLe Sacre Du Travail
Inside Out U.S. 2013
Audio CD$6.99
$5.99 (used)
Place in the QueuePlace in the Queue
Inside Out U.S. 2006
Audio CD$12.87
$9.48 (used)
CommComm
Inside Out U.S. 2011
Audio CD$9.47
$7.50 (used)
The World That We Drive ThroughThe World That We Drive Through
Special Edition
Inside Out U.S. 2004
Audio CD$29.78
$3.69 (used)
Going Off on OneGoing Off on One
Inside Out U.S. 2007
Audio CD$12.97
$9.83 (used)
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THE TANGENT discography


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

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

4.00 | 253 ratings
The Music That Died Alone
2003
3.73 | 184 ratings
The World That We Drive Through
2004
3.80 | 254 ratings
A Place In The Queue
2006
3.86 | 299 ratings
Not As Good As The Book
2008
3.73 | 210 ratings
Down And Out In Paris And London
2009
3.83 | 259 ratings
COMM
2011
3.95 | 257 ratings
Le Sacre du Travail
2013

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

3.99 | 29 ratings
Pyramids And Stars
2005
4.33 | 57 ratings
Going Off On One
2007

THE TANGENT Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.02 | 48 ratings
Going Off On One
2007
4.55 | 33 ratings
Going Off On Two
2011

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

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

3.97 | 28 ratings
A Place On The Shelf
2009
3.93 | 15 ratings
L'Etagere du Travail
2013

THE TANGENT Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The World That We Drive Through by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.73 | 184 ratings

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The World That We Drive Through
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars Originally intended to be a one-shot superproject, The Tangent surprisingly moved on to live performances since 2003 as well as the recordings of a second album.Line-up changes characterized the band's career from this point on, starting from the departure of David Jackson and the arrival of legendary sax/flute player Theo Travis, who had been a member of Gong besides his long solo albums' catalogue.The new album, released again on Inside Out, carried the name ''The world that we drive through'' and saw the light in October 2004.

In this effort The Tangent will challenge themselves to creating long, progressive tracks with huge 70's influences.The original edition features five of them, spanning from 8 to 18 minutes, ready to saitfy the needs of a Progressive Rock fan.The strong character of Roine Stolt next to part of THE FLOWER KINGS line-up and the British roots of Andy Tillison combine in yet another weird amalgam of Symphonic Rock and old-styled Prog/Fusion, where the Canterbury flavors are now reduced and there appears to be a slight turn towards more abstract and loose textures during the more jazzy moments.Tillison and Baine offer some very good keyboard parts, including nostalgic organs, dreamy electric piano and angular synth flights, and you should place them next to Stolt's distinctive guitar plays, which contain both some incredible melodies and light, jazzy overtoones.Travis appears to be a great addition, his slightly psychedelic style on sax and flute adds a pretty beautiful vibe to The Tangent's sound.As a result the tracks contain bombastic parts and refined themes akin to 70's Classic Prog with strong symphonic colors, which often break into jazzy interludes and tricky plays with piano, guitar and sax in evidence.Plenty of interplays, nice vocals and odd time signatures are also in the menu.At this point The Tangent sound as if YES, E.L.P. and CLEARLIGHT were sharing the same members with a few hints from the old Canterbury school of Jazz/Prog.

Not all tracks are equally consistent and solid, but their length allows the listener to absorb some of the coolest ideas found in modern Prog.Progressive Rock at its most classic form, filled with symphonic, jazzy and Canterbury colors.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

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 Le Sacre du Travail by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.95 | 257 ratings

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Le Sacre du Travail
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by Gatot
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars a wonderfully crafted prog album!

Phew! Finally ... I got a chance to write this album from the band where I have been a big fan of it since its debut album which was really wonderful and it was totally in canterbury scene I would say. And now the latest album has been becoming my regular playlist but for some reason I failed to write a review about it. In one sense there has been confusion inside myself as whether or not I give a full five star rating or somewhere about four plus star rating. Well, I have been listening to it in its entirety more then ten spins already by now but yet I have not made any decision until I finally realized there are not so many people have reviewed it .... So have to write it by now and for sure the rating is on four star plus, not just four because this is really very excellent album and very close to perfection.

Musically, I imagine this is like something about or similar to classical movements even though I am not good at enjoying classical music per se. But I would treat my journey in listening to this album is like a classical music piece. It starts wonderfully with a full orchestra piece called as 1st movement: Coming Up on the Hour (Overture) (5:55) which sounds like a playing field by many musicians. But of course the listeners would be aware of the facts that there are plenty of softwares were used to record this opening piece as indicated by its liner notes on its inlay. The overture to me sounds like a masterpiece classical music regardless this is the result of software engineering work - I really don't care. In here, I can sense the beauty of the music as it sounds ...and honestly without reading the liner notes I would not be aware of the use of softwares. So ... congratulations Mr Andy! You have done such a great job on this opening piece.

The next bit is basically an epic in itself with 2nd movement: Morning Journey & Arrival (22:54) where at the beginning it moves very slowly and typical progrockers would not be so patient listening to the long and slow moving piece. But it's not in my case ... I fully enjoy this second track in its fullest from start to the end. But if you are quite patient enough the moves slowly in crescendo with excellent vocal work. There are long keyboard solo combined nicely with nice vocal choirs. It moves nicely to the next bit of track 3 titled as 3rd movement: Afternoon Malaise (19:20) with basically similar structure, starting with an ambient mode. But overall this third movement is as excellent as the 2nd.

I don't intend to elaborate track by track of this album but for sure the tracks featured in five movements are all of theme excellent in its entirety and all of the fives have formed one cohesive whole in terms of music structural integrity. I really admire this band, really!

As all probably have known that The Tangent is basically an ever-evolving lineup of talented musicians led by Andy Tillison. Le Sacre Du Travail which translated from the French means The Rite of Work which basically the story of down-to-earth subject matter: the millions of people who go to work every day. Boring? It's probably they are. But ...life is choices and they don't have the reason to get bored - in my humblest opinion. From the lineup, there is Andy himself, who wrote all of the material, and is featured heavily on keyboards, vocals, and guitar. Other Tangent regulars appearing on the album are Theo Travis playing woodwinds, Jonas Reingold from The Flower Kings on bass, Jakko Jakszyk on guitar, and Guy Manning on acoustic guitar. Gavin Harrison, a newcomer ex Porcupine Tree, plays drums, and David Longdon of Big Big Train contributed some vocals. Rikard Sjoblom of Beardfish does the narration on the first track of the album. In Beardfish's The Void, Andy Tillison did the narration on the first track, and now it seems that Rikard is returning the favor on Le Sacre Du Travail for the Tangent.

Andy explains the liner notes regarding the influences of this album. The most are Igor Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring, as well as Emerson Lake & Palmer's re-imagining of Pictures at an Exhibition. Actually Andy was working on re-writing The Rite of Spring, but was unable to complete the work due to copyright issues and finally made it as Le Sacre Du Travail.

Overall, I would highly recommend to those who claim themselves as progrockers to love this wonderfully crafted album. You should not miss this one at all. It's more than just an excellent progrock album but it also hooks you to the bone, I believe.... Keep on proggin' ...!!!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

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 A Place In The Queue by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.80 | 254 ratings

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A Place In The Queue
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by Ensouled

5 stars Best Symphonic Prog Album of the year?... Almost there...

Current prog listeners need FUSION, theres so much music to listen to nowadays, why not fusion the best of all into a single album?... You can start with The Tangent.

The lyrics play a HUGE roll in the album; Andy Tillison has an incredible sense of modern concepts making his albums very realistic on matters that affect us all.

Getting into the lyrics is easy since the music behind it is incredible, i mean the Jazzy sections makes The Tangent one of the final steps on symphonic prog appreciation. Though theres a lot of progressive "booms" sections, especially soloings on In Earnest (One of my favourite tracks of all times) ...

What makes this record amazing is the artistic ambience it has fusioned with progressive rock; it has opened new doors in the genre by adding modern fusions, interesting thoughts about real problems we face and my favourite ingredient Jazz.

Every musician just brought to this record one of their best inspired thoughts..Manning, Travis, Baine . it was like this holy bag, and they started throwing their wealth in there, making it invaluable...

5 Stars for bringing it in times we really need this kind of concepts and to feel we are not robots...we face a new dimension of techonology advancement and stress as we search for meaning in our lives and is very important that artists choose to explore these concepts, thats why The Tanget music is special.

I believe this record contains the necessary ingredients that are listed on a "work of art", and it will be interesting to review them.

This is a list by Mark Rothko to acknowledge what I mean :

There must be a clear

PREOCCUPATION WITH DEATH - intimations of mortality....Tragic art, romantic art, etc. deals with the knowledge of death.

SENSUALITY. Our basis of being concrete about the world. It is a lustful relationship to things that exist.

TENSION. Either conflict or curbed desire.

IRONY. This is a modern ingredient-the self effacement and examination

WIT and PLAY....for the human element.

The EPHEMERAL and CHANCE....for the human element.

HOPE. 10% to make the tragic concept more endurable.

Think about it...

Highly Recommended!

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 Not As Good As The Book by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2008
3.86 | 299 ratings

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Not As Good As The Book
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by Oreste

2 stars Not as good as the book ... but surely with more speeches than the book! Really, too much words in this album, and a kind of progressive that deny its meaning and reason to be: progressive is the contrary of static, what this album is. The music goes on for all the tracks, but nothing hits me either good or bad. I agree totally with crimson 87 review, this is only a sort of style exercise, very well done, but unfortunally too empty, too poor in terms of feelings, don't goes beyond the ears. When you're asking yourself to listen it again or choose another one, the choice will be the second most of times: result=2 stars.

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 COMM by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.83 | 259 ratings

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COMM
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by Lumix

3 stars The Tangent is a excellent prog band in my opinion but first time I lived disappointment in this album because of Vocals! Albums music are very nice as always but when vocal start I want to stop the music. Very interesting but how they can find this guy for vocals, I can not understand... I can give 4 stars for this album minimum but I want to give 3 stars only because of vocals. If you can not think vocals, a very nice concept album. Actually Tangent' all albums are near perfect. I can highly recommend Tangent for every prog fans... 4 stars... because of vocals 3 stars

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 Le Sacre du Travail by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.95 | 257 ratings

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Le Sacre du Travail
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by DrömmarenAdrian

4 stars The Tangest's this year record "Le Sacre du Travail(The Rite of Work)" was an exciting experience and an example of good nowadays prog. The group is named Multi-National and features musicians from England and Sweden(perhaps more locations- nowadys it's hard to guess just by the names). The cover is colourful and it's not clear by it, that it's a prog record. I don't like the band's log, but that is not important for the experience. The musicians that make this work are Andy Tillison(composer, vocals, guitars and keyboards), Theo Travis(saxes, flutes and clarinets), David Longdon(vocals), Jakko Jakkszyk(vocals and guitars), Gavin Harrison(drums), Jonas Reingold(bass), Rikard Sjöblom(narration) and Guy Manning(acoustic guitar).

I liked this from the beginning. The band tells a story with precesion and great musicallity. I'm impressed of this modern prog. The rock is spiced by Theo Travis fantastic playing on his woodwind instruments. This record is a lot of rock but it allways blends it with classical approach. Music is partially very symphonic and Tillison's keys leads like Wakeman in his best moments. The record is even and all tracks has it's ups and downs. I think progressive artists in this times overdo long songs, they often have'nt the former skill of the 70s proggers. The Tangent does long tracks and I think they manage it well. For people who have listened to Big Big Train, the vocals of David Longdon can be recognized. He does a better job here than at BBT's last record and the variation made of three singers also developes this music in an interesting way.

What's negative then. Well I don't like bonus tracks so I would have prefered just listen to the first five tracks. Beside that I can't find anything to complain about. I could be silly and argue their logotype but...Perhaps it's not very "new" music, but it doesn't make it less good. Recommended plate! Four stars!

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 Le Sacre du Travail by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.95 | 257 ratings

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Le Sacre du Travail
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by kev rowland
Special Collaborator Crossover Team

4 stars he Tangent have certainly come a long way since Andy Tillison decided that he needed another project outside of PO90 and formed this band with Guy Manning and Roine Stolt. Neither are there these days, but he does have Jakko M. Jakszyk (Level 42) on guitar, Theo Travis (Robert Fripp, Gong, Porcupine Tree, Bill Nelson, No-Man, Steven Wilson etc) on sax, flutes and clarinets, Jonas Reingold (The Flower Kings) on bass, Gavin Harrison (King Crimson, Porcupine Tree) on drums and singer David Longdon (Big Big Train) so none of these are slouches. This is a concept album, based on 'The Rite of Work'. There is a narration where it is explained that on this island 50 million people wake up, and an hour later they have to be more than 30 miles away doing something that they don't want to do, so that for a short period of time they can say that they can own a building!

This is a very English prog album, both in music and lyrics. I wonder how many people who have never heard 'Steve Wright in the Afternoon' will understand the reference to factoids, but for someone like me who remembers when Steve was on Radio One (as opposed to Radio Two), all of this just made me smile. Musically it is very diverse, as although obvious reference is "Days of Future Passed" which starts with the beginning of the day and ending with the night, while here we start with the beginning of the day and ending up with "Evening TV" having survived the trip home through the rush hour, there is actually a lot going on as Andy brings in influences and textures from all forms of music. Some of the music is designed to make you think, while at other times it is almost pure pop. It doesn't always hit the mark, but when it does it is both enthralling and exciting.

Many years ago, Andy eked out a living as a sound engineer and was responsible for recording many independent bands at the end of the Seventies, and it is back to this era we go with the punk power pop version of "Hat", which may or may not be from 1979 as stated in the title.

It may not be perfect, but yet again Andy has produced something that is definitely worthy of investigation. If you haven't come across this band before then you owe it to yourself to do so now.

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 Le Sacre du Travail by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.95 | 257 ratings

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Le Sacre du Travail
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by arcane-beautiful

5 stars The Tangent are a band I have always kept a keen eye on. In fact, I have even had a brief history with the band (I was one of the finalists for the solo competition they had for their song 'The Wiki Man' from their last album 'COMM'), so I do know how amazing these guys are and that band leader Andy Tillison is an absolute dude...oh yea, and he is a musical genius.

So, having done everything a band could possibly do (double albums, concept albums, an album with a book, a competition to allow fans to play on the album), Andy Tillison went to his big brain of ideas and decided, 'a musical...that should do it.'

Ok, this album isn't exactly a musical...but it's not far from it. More of a song cycle or suite, split up into 5 parts, the albums concept deals with the...mundane it seems. Oddly enough, these guys have taken what we all see as the norm and have made it a gigantic spectacle. And it works so well, it's almost funny. Actually, come to think of it...it is funny. The lyrical content is definitely one of the most enjoyable parts of the album, because it is very humorous at times. But behind the humour is a brilliantly crafted satire, which only adds to enjoyment, because...it makes you think and stuff. Because the band is more of an ensemble, these guys have had a revolving door of members, and on this album we see some new faces. One of the biggest surprises was the addition of Gavin Harrison on drums, who in my opinion, is probably one of the greatest drummers to have ever lived. Another amazing add to the band was bassist Jonas Reingold, who is no doubt one of the best there is. I actually hope that one day they'll get me to join the band on some useless instrument.

One of the biggest changes is the songwriting style that the band has adapted, and I have to admit, I am glad they have made this change because it works so well. Each main body of work or song, which usually lasts from 12-22 minutes, has within it about 2, 3 or 4 actual songs with instrumental sections interlinking them. In many ways, this reminds me of Neal Morse's style of songwriting, and I have to admit...this type of songwriting always impresses me, especially whenever great catchy chorus' and hooks appear now and then.

The albums biggest highlight is the 22 minute epic 'Morning Journey & Arrival.' One of the real highlights on this song has to be the intro section 'Dawn Over Blubberhouses,' which I could listen to over and over again. The other major focal point has to be 'Bird Shit.' An absolute crazy piece with some great intertwining vocals throughout.

The albums second epic 'Afternoon Malaise' probably has the albums most stand out moments, in the form of a part called 'Steve Wright In The Afternoon.' Really the crux of this piece, it is one of the best and most interesting parts on the album. At times it sounds like a rock song, a prog song, a death metal song and even a musical. A bit of a mixed basket really, but it totally works.

The third epic on the album 'Evening TV', is probably my least favourite moment on it. Now don't get me wrong, I think it's an absolutely amazing way to end this incredible body of work, but I think my disdain towards it is because Andy keeps on saying 'put the kettle on'...and I don't like tea. Weird criticism, but whatever, I stand by it.

In conclusion...this is the best Tangent album. I have been saying that about a lot of bands this year, but this has been an absolutely fabulous year for music, and The Tangent have just made another gem this year. The Tangent for me have always been sailing between the crazy and the too crazy, but they have entertained me for many years. Whenever there first album came out 'The Music That Died Alone' came out, I did say to myself that they would never be able to top it. Now they finally have. This is a must have for any prog fan, and any fan of music would at least marvel at what these guys can do.

8.9/10

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 Le Sacre du Travail by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.95 | 257 ratings

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Le Sacre du Travail
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by PodProg

5 stars The most complete The Tangent album to date. And, to me, the best one since A Place in the Queue.

I'd almost given up after the last two albums, but I'm very glad I gave this one a chance.

The musicianship is superb, the lyrics are as clever and cynical as ever. (Only Andy Tillison could rhyme 'bird[&*!#]' with 'traverse it'.) It's nice to see Jakko and Jonas back. And Gavin Harrison's drumming is clever and solid, as ever. My only criticism is that I would have liked to hear David Longdon's voice more (Big Big Train). He's got it, so flaunt it!

My personal favourite on the album is the ending of the Third Movement. The Tangent at their emotional best.

If you haven't heard a The Tangent album yet, buy this one first. It's incredible. Well done, Andy and gang!

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 Le Sacre du Travail by TANGENT, THE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.95 | 257 ratings

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Le Sacre du Travail
The Tangent Eclectic Prog

Review by treebeard

5 stars The latest release from The Tangent; 'Le Sacre Du Travail' (The Rite of Work) is in every way a modern Prog Rock classic, from the opening overture to the closing cacophony of traffic chaos and dying notes.

It ticks all the boxes for a true prog production. A grand concept?check Symphonic elements?.check Classical influences?check Set over a number of 'parts'?check Plenty of Hammond organ?.check Epic length songs?.check

And yet, the album is not a retro, far out conceptual dinosaur piece. It speaks clearly to the listener of the modern 21st century ritual of work , the journey in the chaos of the morning rush hour, on to the afternoon, where were are soothed of our tired corporate lives with the friendly radio DJ, dulling us as we queue on the motorway to get home. Closing with the part of the day which highlights our devotion of TV and the shows designed to fill our lives and provide some meaning.

There are various points of related subtext to the piece that dovetail nicely as we travel along. The brainwashing of corporate organisations that take our souls, the acquisition of 'things' to provide our lives with meaning, that ultimately end up being sold online after we die, the slavery to the life of work and paying tax and owning property and the consumption of the world's resources all to make this happen. It sounds bleak, in some ways more so than anything by Roger Waters..(and he can do bleak) only because the piece holds a mirror up for us to view our existence, showing us up like hamsters on a wheel going round and round.

Musically this impressive album matches the potent theme. It features a very impressive collection of musicians whose ability and style compliment and deliver Andy Tillison's work perfectly. Tillison himself provides some of his most impressive performances to date, delivered over a stunningly powerful rhythm section of Gavin Harrison and former band member, Jonas Reingold. Theo Travis has a major part to play with the wind sections taking a greater precedence over this work than any other Tangent work. Another former member Jakko Jakszyk along with Big Big Train's David Longdon provide guitar and vocals which broaden the dimensions of the sound even further than before.

'Le Sacre Du Travail' feels and sounds like the landmark album in Andy Tillison's already superb body of work, a real career high. All the more monumental when you factor in the background of this new album. The past two years since 'Comm' have been a rollercoaster, one that would see most bands derail completely. Against the backdrop of the dissolving of the band and some tough financial conditions, Tillison has endured and produced a polished masterpiece, and I do use that word in its correct fashion. If modern heavy progressive rock, confused as it is, with its metal poisoning running through it is your idea of Prog, then a listen to this album will broaden your horizons in new ways. If you are old enough to remember it all the first time, then this album brings back the highs of the genre and leaves you feeling elated and ready for another listen.

Full marks to the Tangent for this latest offering.

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