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THE SAMURAI OF PROG

Crossover Prog • Multi-National


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The Samurai Of Prog biography
Founded in 2009 as a multinational collaboration project

Multinational ensemble THE SAMURAI OF PROG was formed as a project lead by Finland-based Italian composer and bassist Marco Bernard. He's been active in the Finnish Association for Progressive Music since 1995, and have been involved in their Colossus Magazine since 1996 - and instrumental in the Colossus series of theme albums they have created in cooperation with French label Musea Records.

It was for a contribution to one of those projects that The Samurai of Prog was born, and joining Bernard as permanent members we find US artist Steve UNRUH and Finnish drummer Kimmo Pörsti. Besides this core trio, the philosophy of this band appears to be to involve additional musicians as needed and wanted, and their debut effort Undercover from 2011 bears testimony to that line of thinking, with a list of guest appearances impressive in length, scope as well as quality.

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THE SAMURAI OF PROG discography


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

3.43 | 86 ratings
Undercover
2011
3.98 | 131 ratings
Secrets Of Disguise
2013
3.98 | 207 ratings
The Imperial Hotel
2014
3.76 | 132 ratings
Lost And Found
2016
3.86 | 167 ratings
On We Sail
2017
3.88 | 136 ratings
Archiviarum
2018
3.86 | 149 ratings
Toki No Kaze
2019
3.82 | 121 ratings
Bernard & Pörsti: Gulliver
2020
3.64 | 39 ratings
Bernard & Pörsti: La Tierra
2020
3.95 | 62 ratings
Beyond the Wardrobe
2020
3.25 | 28 ratings
The Lady and The Lion and Other Grimm Tales I
2021
3.54 | 13 ratings
The White Snake and Other Grimm Tales II
2021

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

THE SAMURAI OF PROG Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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

4.21 | 19 ratings
Omnibus - The Early Years
2018

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

4.10 | 20 ratings
The Demise of the Third King's Empire
2020

THE SAMURAI OF PROG Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Lady and The Lion and Other Grimm Tales I by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Studio Album, 2021
3.25 | 28 ratings

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The Lady and The Lion and Other Grimm Tales I
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by Squonk19

3 stars THE SAMURAI OF PROG is a multinational symphonic prog rock project dating back to 2009, led by Finland-based, Italian composer and bassist Marco Bernard, with permanent members: Steve Unruh on vocals, violin, flute and guitars, and Kimmo P'rsti on drums and percussion ' along with a raft of guest musicians and vocalists ' many who have appeared on earlier releases. THE LADY AND THE LION, released in May, is volume one of a new series of based on the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm.

As someone fairly new to the project, I found much to enjoy with the ensemble work across the relatively short, 6- track, 42 minutes album duration. Bernard's bass and Porsti's drums drives through most tracks impressively, with Unruh's violin and flute and guitar lovely additions throughout.

Into the Woods is an atmospheric introduction to our journey into the world of magic with the whispered 'Once Upon a Time' vocal welcoming us into the concept and album series. The Three Snake Leaves is even better, with Unruh's vocals combining well with some powerful and dynamic instrumental prog, with retro keyboards mixing fluidly with soaring guitar runs, driving bass and violin and flute supporting this mini-epic. Iron John is an uplifting, cinematic instrumental, written by Kayak's Ton Scherpenzeel, with glorious sweeping keyboard and some moving violin to end with. Long-time collaborator, David Myers, delivers a beautiful and melodic solo piano piece, The Lady and the Lion later on, as well.

However, the two narrative-led tracks: A Queen's Wish and Blue Light, might be more of an acquired taste for many symphonic prog listeners. A Queen's Wish is a very literal rendition of the tale of Snow White ' and unfortunately the excellent instrumental work (which is impressive) is rather dominated by the theatrical vocals and spoken words throughout. Phideaux's Valerie Gracious has a powerful, expressive voice, but in this context, her Kate Bush- like, Evil Queen portrayal feels like it is akin to a commentary over a provincial theatre or children's television Christmas pantomime. Blue Light closes the album and fares a little better, but still suffers from that same melodramatic vocal style at times. However, if you are at ease with that story-telling approach from similar concept prog releases from other artists (as many are), you might have no reservations and enjoy the approach ' as musically, the album cannot be faulted.

The second volume is entitled THE WHITE WITCH and is due out in July. If they continue with the strong compositional work and can find a better balance between the impressive instrumental symphonic prog, and restrain the theatrical vocal performances, the Grimm Tales series of albums might be worth persisting with.

(From The Progressive Aspect - A Different Aspect)

 The Lady and The Lion and Other Grimm Tales I by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Studio Album, 2021
3.25 | 28 ratings

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The Lady and The Lion and Other Grimm Tales I
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

3 stars The multi-national recording project The Samurai Of Prog shows no signs of slowing down. In recent years we've had many many albums of TSOP and related, such as the solo album of Kimmo Pörsti, and The Guildmaster project with its folk orientation. The American core member Steve Unruh has been less, if at all, involved on several of those recent albums, but on this new release his contribution is very central. This time the album concept -- for which a sequel is undoubtedly to be expected later this year -- is built on the fairy tales of Brothers Grimm. As a literature lover I find that quite appealing to start with. It's nice to have the plot summaries of the tales in the booklet, but in the end I'm not happy of the way the story-telling occasionally dominates the compositions. I'll come to that later.

The instrumental opening track 'Into the Woods' composed by keyboardist Alessandro Di Benedetti (Mad Crayon, Inner Prospekt) is very charming in its airy melodic approach reminiscent of Camel -- ah, the flute! -- and Spectral Mornings -era Steve Hackett. 'The Three Snake-Leaves' (9:43) written by Chilean prog composer Jaime Rosas with Unruh's lyrics captures the tale's drama effectively. The music is very dynamic, at times heavy, and there are gorgeous soli for various instruments. Unruh's vocals remind me of early Marillion and Fish at his most dramatic (e.g. 'The Web' for the whispered section). Then comes another instrumental, 'Iron John' composed by Ton Scherpenzeel (Kayak). He was a core member in The Guildmaster, and also here he added some Old Music flavor although the track rocks too. This far the album is just as satisfying as one has learnt to expect from these hard- working guys and their contributors.

The latter half leaves me less impressed and a bit frustrated to be honest. The solo piano title piece by TSOP's long- time contributor David Myers is beautiful all right (I hear a slight pop ballad flavor à la Billy Joel, which is not a bad thing), but it is sandwiched by two vocally over-theatrical pieces where the narrative level gets way too dominant in my opinion. 'A Queen's Wish' (Di Benedetti/Unruh) is based on the fairy tale of Snow White, and Steve Unruh's vocals are accompanied by Phideaux's Valerie Gracious who acts as the mean queen. This is the album's longest track (11:36) and it contains excellent prog sections, but, as the vocals are mostly either narrative or pure voice acting, I can't help thinking of the audiovisual Disney fairy tales released in my childhood. In other words, the fine music becomes painfully secondary to the shamelessly melodramatic story telling. 'The Blue Light' (composed by Octavio Stampalia of Jinetes Negros) suffers from the same feature. Valerie reappears as a witch.

So, this time my rating is lower than for TSOP releases usually (five stars haven't been a rarity!), but I want to underline that it's mainly because of my disliking for the over-theatrical, story-telling oriented approach especially on two songs. This album is also relatively short compared to many preceding albums. The length in itself is not essential, but the lesser amount of quantity means there is less stuff to be fully charmed by. That said, the best TSOP albums such as Toki No Kaze are IMHO fantastic symphonic prog all the way.

 Bernard & Pörsti: Gulliver by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.82 | 121 ratings

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Bernard & Pörsti: Gulliver
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by prog_traveller!!

4 stars The samurai of prog is a brainclind of Finland-based Italian composer and bassist Marco Bernard and since 2011 the band has delivered fantastic prog. In 2020 Marco Bernard and Kimmo Pörsti were really busy delivering fantastic music with four albums released, which featured various musicians.

BERNARD & PÖRSTI - GULLIVER at the beginning delivers an instrumental Overture XI dominated by heavy Hammond and switches in tempo from roaring keys to calm sequences led by melodic guitar solos.

Lilliput Suite is the longest track on the album and it introduces flute, violin, and trumpet. Everything about this piece delivers fantastic symphonic prog with beautiful melodies and complex passages.

The entire album is a prog rock gold filled with confidence and brilliant musical expressions.

 Beyond the Wardrobe by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.95 | 62 ratings

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Beyond the Wardrobe
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

5 stars The multi-national, Finland-based recording project did it again, a marvelous, superbly produced album of first class retro-natured symphonic prog composed and co- performed by excellent prog musicians from various countries including e.g. Argentine, Netherlands, Italy and Japan. In fact I believe this album will be one of my biggest TSOP favourites! (After editing two former ratings this is now my third full rating for this project.)

With nine tracks this album remains under an hour in length. This means the average track length is slightly shorter than on several other TSOP albums, and that is actually a benefit for the whole in which each piece is very good and have distinctive characters. The varying of vocalists and the placing of instrumentals is truly ideal here.

'Another Time' (written by Ronaldo Rodrigues and Steve Unruh who also sings) evolves dynamically from mellowness to energetic instrumental section and features Marek Arnold on saxophone. Oliviero Lacagnina composed a pompous symph prog instrumental 'Dear Amadeus' inspired by Mozart. One may think of 70's RPI bands such as Latte e Miele. 'King of Spades' (by Alessandro Di Benedetti) features Daniel Fäldt's vocals. There's a classic Genesis influence in this charming, mellow piece, but also a cool electric violin solo.

Unruh sings 'Forest Rondo' he co-wrote with Christian Bideau. Impressive dynamics between ELP/ Gentle Giant flavours and the more delicate, mystical moments. 'Jester's Dance' is a classical music flavoured instrumental by Octavio Stampalia. 'Kabane' is sung in Japanese by the keys-playing composer Yuko Tomiyama. She has a beautiful, clear voice and the piece is very charming. 'Marigold' is a brief instrumental written by KAYAK's leader Ton Scherpenzeel and his keyboards share the spotlight with Unruh's flute.

'Brandenburg Gate' (by Oliviero Lacagnina) is rooted to Bach; this piece really could have come from the early 70's. The album closes with perhaps its finest song 'Washing the Clouds' written and sung by Elisa Montaldo. Moody, mellow, and on the more romantic side of symphonic prog, and Unruh's soli for violin and electric guitar points at bands like Camel.

This album is one of my favourites of 2020, which indeed has been an amazing year for prog albums.

 Bernard & Pörsti: Gulliver by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.82 | 121 ratings

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Bernard & Pörsti: Gulliver
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by Ovidiu

5 stars Sensational new album from 2 of the amazing musicians of THE SAMURAI OF PROG-KIMMO PORSTY and MARCO BERNARD!The music on this amazing album is simply outstanding....vintage prog rock of the highest quality!Top prog rock and some amazing musicians involved in this ambitious project!The final result is a fantastic album of the highest caliber and the guarantee of another wonderful release from this 2 magnificent musicians!It's a wonderful journey anf the sonic soundscapes created are perfect! Superbe music and great,great moments of pure delight and enchantment!This 2 musicians seems to have an endless inspiration in the process to elaborate such exceptional high quality vintage prog rock! A serious mention to the graphic work,sensational as usual,a masterpiece provided by the unique ED UNITSKY,which made here another memorable piece of true art,which fits perfectly well with the ambitious music! Very coherent and cohesive album ,rich in ideas and musical expressions,a true ear candy even for the more pretentious and die hard fan of vintage prog rock!5 stars for something memorable!
 Bernard & Pörsti: Gulliver by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.82 | 121 ratings

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Bernard & Pörsti: Gulliver
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

4 stars (NB: The Samurai Of Prog is NOT "Crossover Prog", it's SYMPHONIC PROG, more and more clearly with each release, but I won't trouble the Symph team again on this matter.)

TSOP, this time namely bassist Marco Bernard and drummer Kimmo Pörsti from Finland (American Steve Unruh only guests here), continue producing multi-nationally composed and played first-rate symphonic concept albums with an amazing album per year phase. In 2019 came the anime/manga inspired Toki No Kaze, which I felt was the finest TSOP release so far. For me, this brand new album based on Jonathan Swift's classic satire isn't taking that place, but this is actually the most coherent TSOP album ever, with an easy-to-follow single narrative entity, dealing with Samuel Gulliver's adventures in four different imaginary lands.

There are six tracks on this 62-minute album. 'Overture XI' (7:42) is an instrumental composed by and featuring Andrea Pavoni on keyboards. Vintage keyboards dominate this RPI-flavoured piece, until the electric guitar (Kari Riihimäki) starts soloing after a pastorally quiet moment, later to be joined by Marek Arnold's saxophone. Excellent symphonic prog track!

'Lilliput Suite' (17:53) is the longest piece, divided into six movements. Composition and keys by Oliviero Lacagnina, and a wider guest list (e.g. violin, flute, trumpet). The music strongly resembles the Foxtrot-era GENESIS -- partly due to the Gabriel- esque vocals of Marco Vincini -- with some ELPish organ work and orchestral arrangements thrown in. The movement changes are not as seamless as they could be, but overall this is a fine symphonic prog epic in a classic style. It's important that there are delicate moments between more majestic parts, and lots of instrumental sections.

'The Giants' (8:42) is an instrumental symph prog piece, composition and keys by Mimmo Ferri. The excellent arrangement gives various instruments their own turns to play powerful melodies. 'The Land of the Fools' (14:30) is written by keyboardist Alessandro Di Benedetti and sung by Daniel Fäldt from Simon Says. I'm not very fond of the vocals as the lyrics occasionally feel too central, but on the numerous and lengthy instrumental sections the music is very versatile and nuanced, sometimes reminding of e.g. Flower Kings, sometimes Happy The Man. The delicate piano is in a classical / jazz mould. Beautiful, fusiony or Camel-like guitar parts by Federico Tetti and Massimo Sposaro.

On Luca Scherani -composed 'Gulliver's Fourth Travel' (10:17) vocalist-violinist Steve Unruh shares the bilingual vocals with Stefano Galifi from Museo Rosenbach. This very RPI-ish, dynamic piece is, especially in a dramaturgic sense, reminiscent of Genesis around 1972-4, plus the lovely violin. The album ends with Alessandro Lamuraglia's instrumental 'Finale' that indeed has a bold atmosphere of a grande finale.

As I said, "Gulliver" is a coherent album, despite sharing the composion duties between six various keyboardists. I wouldn't be surprised at all if several TSOP listeners named this one their favourite (well, the only preceding reviewer already did). As always, Ed Unitsky has done terrific job on the covers and the booklet.

 Bernard & Pörsti: Gulliver by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Studio Album, 2020
3.82 | 121 ratings

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Bernard & Pörsti: Gulliver
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by Danlsch

4 stars This could easily be my favorite TSOP (-1) album. Aiming the compositions at a common theme creates a musical cohesiveness that works really well throughout the entire album. Sure, there is plenty to recognize from vintage prog, but nothing borrowed. Kimmo Porsti and Marco Bernard have put together an album that, to my ears, seems their most dynamic work to date. It is not hindered by the desire to insert too many instruments to support the compositions. Mostly the songs sport drums, bass, keys, and guitars--with other instruments used as small embellishments or solos. The album has a more classic band feel. Porsti's drums are mixed more aggressively into the music which brings a stronger edge. Get this album. Highly recommended.
 Lost And Found by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Studio Album, 2016
3.76 | 132 ratings

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Lost And Found
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by stefro
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Formed during the recording of the Colossus Records/Musea various artists project 'Dante's Divine Comedy'(just one in a series of themed concept albums focusing on classical musical works and/or books) The Samurai Of Prog are a three-man collective who work in pretty much the same way as The Alan Parsons Project, with the core trio doing the bulk of writing and recording, whilst guest artists, some rather impressive, fill the gaps. Based in Finland, TSOP consists of Italian Marco Bernard, American Steve Unruh and local lad Kimmo Porsti, and since debuting have issued some seven full-length albums. And I mean full length. That's because your typical TSOP album usually clocks in at around 100 minutes, some times longer, and there is no shortage of full-on, symphonic, 1970's- style progressive rock to be had. Ever. Whilst earlier albums consisted of a mixture of original material and cover versions, later efforts, such as this 2016 effort, are completely original, and boy do Marco, Steve and Kimmo dig their classic prog. Clocking in at just under two hours, 'Lost & Found' is a beast of an package. Timewise, it's the other side of epic, and that's before you've begun to tackle the second disc, which features 'The Demise', a gloriously OTT epic which lasts a full fifty-seven minutes plus. Back in the day, artists who count as TSOP's major influences, the likes of Yes, Gentle Giant and Greenslade, were restricted by the amount of good-quality material you could fit on an album-length LP. Nowadays, that problem is no more, and group's like TSOP have taken the format from one extreme to another. Now, there is almost no limit to how long you want your prog epics to be, and as a result, you get albums like 'Lost & Found'. But, is it any good? Well, in technical terms, it's clear Bernard, Unruh and Portsi are all fine musicians, and there ability to attract some top European prog talent can be counted as bonus. In the 1970's and 1980's, Alan Parsons and Ed Woolfenden utilised the same formula, and a number of established rock and pop players, to enhance their albums content, and for the most part it worked well. On 'Lost & Found', TSOP are backed by ex-Pavlov's Dog guitarist Steve Scorfina, Unitopia vocalist Mark Trueack and former Glass Hammer frontman Jon Davison, to name a few, but the bulk of the instrumental work is carried about by the main threesome. The music is inventive, crisply-played and wonderfully-light, but also overly-slick, with the group's reliance of computer-generated sounds sometimes distracting from the album's overall feel. 'Lost & Found' is a throwback to the age of the 1970's, but sounds too much like an album made in the 2010's. The major problem, however, is of course the length. This is an album that could have easily been half-as-long and just0-as-good, if not better. The Disc Two track 'The Demise' is relentlessly overbearing, despite a strong start, and after 25mins most listeners would have surely run out of patience. In the end, 'Lost & Found' is the kind of album that deserves praise for it's sheer ambition and vision. Bernard, Unruh & Porsi are true modern prog titans. It's just some of us like our prog a little less titan-esque. Rich, elegant and full of strong musical performancea, this is still prime progressive rock, though it takes a stong will and plenty of spare time to sit through in it's entirety. STEFAN TURNER, STOKE NEWINGTON, 2019
 Toki No Kaze by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Studio Album, 2019
3.86 | 149 ratings

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Toki No Kaze
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by TenYearsAfter

3 stars "UPDATE INTERESTING NEW PROG"

This is a Finnish prog project that evolved from the collaboration between the Finnish Colossus magazine and the French prog distribution mail-order Musea. Between 2011 and 2019 The Samurai Of Prog released seven albums, this review is about its latest one, entitled Toki No Kaze (2019). Not every track is my cup of tea but Toki No Kaze delivers a lot of captivating and exciting compositions.

My highlights.

A Tear in the Sunset (8:07) : It starts mellow with dreamy flute and piano, then bombastic with exciting Hammond, synthesizers and classical orchestrations by Octavio Stampalìa (Jinetes Negros) and fiery electric guitar runs, blended with trumpet and French horn. It sounds like classical meets rock and prog (ELP). The climate returns to mellow with flute, then gradually more bombastic with fiery guitar and a churchy choir sound, and a brass synthesizer sound like Emerson. In the final part the sound gradually turns from dreamy to bombastic with awesome classical orchestrations, blende with trumpet, it sounds majestic, like the final part of a heroic movie.

Zero (7:40) : First dreamy flute and classical piano, then a catchy beat with a varied synthesizer sound and classical piano, by Alessandro Di Benedetti from Mad Crayon (one of the most overlooked Italian bands), soon joined by propulsive guitar riff and exciting keyboard sound. Then from dreamy with piano to bombastic with spectacular synthesizer work and propulsive guitar riff, and finally a slow rhythm with tender saxophone play, a very alternating and captivating composition.

The Never-Ending Line (4:55) : A beautiful, very mellow piece featuring warm piano and vocals, blended with spacey synthesizers flights.

Au Contraire (5:07) : First a sensational intro with violin and synthesizer (by Oliviero Lacagnina from Latte e Miele), then the music alternates between dreamy, mid-tempo and bombastic, with a very tasteful and varied colouring with instruments: from French horn, Hammond, piano, flute and piano to classical orchestrations, synthesizers and swirling violin, how exciting.

Reality (9:24) : This track features Japanese guest musicians Yuko Tomiyama (piano and vocals) and Alan Kamran Shikoh (on electric guitar). The intro delivers sounds and soft organ, then piano and warm vocals, majestic orchestrations and a sensitive electric guitar solo, this is wonderful and compelling prog. Finally tight drum beats, bass pedals and dreamy vocals, a beautiful conclusion.

The Spirits Around Us (5:59) : First a dreamy violin and piano, then a slow rhythm with moving violin and electric guitar, followed by a catchy beat with vocals, acoustic guitar and mandolin. Halfway bombastic eruption with swirling violin (Eddie Jobson inspired) and powerful electric guitar solo, the song ends with dreamy vocals and piano.

Think Green (6:30) : This is a very dynamic track that that contains fat ELP-like synthesizer runs (by Michele Mutti from La Torre dell'Alchimista) and swirling violin, fuelled by a dynamic rhythm-section, along strong interplay and powerful vocals.

La Magia e la Realtàa (6:20) : Here we can enjoy varied keyboard work from Elisa Montaldo (Il Tempio delle Clessidre), blended with emotional, Japanese vocals (also from Elisa Montaldo!) and wonderful violin, piano, classical guitar and flute, in a dreamy atmosphere. Then a slow rhythm and halfway an accellaration, it sounds bombastic with keyboards, guitar and violin, then Hammond and flute joins, and again wonderful Japanese vocals. Finally a sensitive electric guitar solo with tender piano runs, this is one of the best compositions on this CD!

My rating: 3,5 star.

This review was recently published on the Dutch prog website Background Magazine, in a slightly different version.

 Omnibus - The Early Years by SAMURAI OF PROG, THE album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2018
4.21 | 19 ratings

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Omnibus - The Early Years
The Samurai Of Prog Crossover Prog

Review by Matti
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Good news for those who have finally found out how great band The Samurai Of Prog is and now wish to complete their collections with earlier albums that have been hard to get for a while: The 4-disc Omnibus box set is now available again. It contains the three first albums of this multi-national group of retro/classic/symphonic prog ambassadors: Undercover, Secrets of Disguise (2-cd) and The Imperial Hotel, partly re-edited or re-recorded, plus extra material of almost an hour's worth.

The two earliest albums concentrated on prog covers. Undercover (2011) covers e.g. 'The Lamia', 'Assassing', 'Jerusalem' and 'Dogs' from the output of major prog bands. However, right from the start there were some original compositions too. David Myers composed and performed 'Before The Lamia' for solo piano, and drummer Kimmo Pörsti composed an excellent lengthy instrumental 'The Promise', which appeared on a slightly different form in a "Decameron" set for various artists. The original bonus tracks of Undercover (ie. other artists covering the earlier Italian band of bassist Marco Bernard) have given way for better stuff: 'Journey to the Island' is a new recording with Octavio Stampalia, originally a John Williams piece from Jurassic Park -- as I found out by googling. 'Indictment Ever After' and two bonus tracks placed on the third disc are magnificent collaborations with Lalo Huber and Carlos Lucena of NEXUS. The third disc features also 'Karn Evil 9, Second Impression' (ELP) as a bonus.

Secrets of Disguise (2013) contains further well-made prog covers of an impressively wide spectrum, from 'Dancing With the Moonlit Knigth', Gentle Giant and P.F.M. to Utopia, VdGG, Rush and even the internationally quite unknown Finn Matti Järvinen. As the liner notes of Omnibus say, it was perhaps 'Sweet Iphigenia' composed by Pörsti and Linus Kåse that changed TSOP's course to perform original music instead of covers. The principle was pursued in The Imperial Hotel (2014), the first TSOP release I considered worth full rating. That album's gorgeous symphonic compositions are by the involved keyboardists, e.g. Robert Webb (of ENGLAND) and the forementioned Stampalia (JINETES NEGROS) and Kåse (BRIGHTEYE BRISON).

There are four more bonus tracks on this box set. 'Un Respiro e Tutto Cambia' is sung by Stefano Galifi of MUSEO ROSENBACH, 'Anatta' is a fusion-y instrumental composed by Christian Bideau, and 'Rimani nella Mia Vita' originates from LATTE E MIELE's classic album Papillon. 'La Magia e la Realta' is from the new [at the release time, forthcoming] album Toki No Kaze. All in all Omnibus is a wonderful cornucopia of both covers (of either well known classics or less heard prog songs) and original material in the symphonic prog vein. If you already have the albums (with admittedly more informative booklets), it's a difficult question whether to get this set too, but even in that case there's plenty of new delights.

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

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