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CORVUS STONE

Crossover Prog • Multi-National


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Corvus Stone biography
Multinational project CORVUS STONE more or less came to be in the spring of 2012 following a series of chance encounters between musicians on social networks, Facebook first and foremost. With a helping hand by dedicated music fan and musician friend Sonia Mota, a common denominator in the virtual friends lists of all the musicians and others involved in the project along the way.

The initial core of this project was Colin Tench, Petri Lemmy Lindström and Pasi Koivu however, with Colin Tench lending some guitar work to one of Pasi Koivu's compositions the first action that lead to a series of reactions that saw Lindström getting involved and the trio in a matter of a few weeks suddenly finalizing a handful of compositions for the sheer fun of it. It was about that time that they collectively realized that they all had a new band project going. Koivu is the main composer of the threesome. Lindström will make the occasional foray into these territories too, while Tench caters for production and arrangements.

As the project evolved a few more people got involved. Another chance encounter saw Blake Carpenter joining the ranks as vocalist and occasional lyricist. As he joined pretty late in the process his input was limited this time around. Another late addition to the band was drummer Robert Wolff, and while he managed to add a few details to the Corvus Stone debut album the majority of his contributions as a band member will be heard on future occasions.

Corvus Stone self-titled debut album was digitally released in the fall of 2012, with a CD edition following shortly after.

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

3.83 | 155 ratings
Corvus Stone
2012
4.11 | 254 ratings
Corvus Stone II
2014

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CORVUS STONE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

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Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by Matti
Collaborator Neo-Prog Team

4 stars Due to the active promoting this album was heavily reviewed 4-5 months ago. I confess I haven't much listened to it during these months, but not because I wouldn't enjoy it. CORVUS STONE is a multinational quartet (keyboardist Pasi Koivu and bassist Petri Lindström being my countrymen from Finland), and worth mentioning as the original namer of the group and "the driving force from day one" is also Sonia Mota, who's painted the hot & sexy cover art. The CS albums may be too unfocused and full to be easily absorbed, but as they themselves state, "you are free to make your 50 minute album from our 80". One has to respect their stubborn and fully devoted passion to make things their own way instead of the safest possible way. My appreciation also to the leaflet with heartfelt credits - and web addresses - to all collaborators and supporters, and lyrics that are mostly written by the guest vocalists in question.

CS II consists of 16 tracks, 7 of them instrumentals. Music is stated to be "extremely varied" and "not genre safe", but I found out that even as a background listening it is rather ear-friendly, despite all the uncoherence one might blame it for. To me this album really seems to be the better and more evenly pleasant musical journey than the debut. There were some genre explorations on the debut that I didn't like. The musicians having fun can sometimes be irritating to the listener. This one is much more coherent to my ears, there wasn't anything I'd strongly dislike and there are more sincere emotions involved in songs, thanks to the finely chosen collaborators. Occasionally I thought that some short instrumental tracks in a row could have been melted into one entity, just for convenience.

Of the vocal tracks I want to mention Phil Naro's short opener 'The Simple Life'; even shorter 'Dark Tower' and its longer brother 'Mystery Man' (both sung by Blake Carpenter); two tracks, a long and a brief one, sung in Finnish by Timo Rautiainen who's best known from the Metal genre but whose voice is here happily free of Metal clichés (those lyrics are by Matti Kervinen of PAX ROMANA); plus the longest and admittedly the best track 'Moaning Lisa' featuring lyrics and vocals of SEAN FILKINS. Indeed, if you feel there are uninteresting fillers, why not plan your own favourite edition (50-60 minutes) of this extremely well produced album. Four stars easily deserved!

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 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

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Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by memowakeman
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars This is the second child of Corvus Stone, a multi-national band whose first album was edited back in 2012, entering to the complex progressive rock world with a daring 79-minute record. With "Corvus Stone II" they repeat the dose, because once again Pasi Koivu, Colin Tench and co. bring a daring 79-minute album, divided in 16 pieces. Personally, when I wrote the review of their first I aid it was really long, so there were moments where I felt lost, where I did not enjoy it as I would have loved to, and I have to say that this same feeling happens now with this new album, but with a lesser impact. However, I have understood they charm lies on their eclecticism, they will to compose and create prog rock whose songs might not be related to each other, but are very well crafted. Of course, I have enjoyed more Corvus Stone now.

It starts with "The Simple Life", a very nice two-minute introduction to Corvus Stone's eclectic journey. The first that caught my attention was the keyboards, and then the vocals with a sweet symphonic sound, so the beginning is bright, let's see what happens next. "Early Morning Call" has some cadency, it is a nice instrumental track that could be used as a film soundtrack, it is easy to put some images in one's head. "Boots for Hire" is the first long composition, reaching almost the nine-minute mark. The sound is pretty interesting, a kind of bluesy introduction with a soft spacey background. At minute 2 vocals by Stef Flaming enter, opening the gates to a brand new song, because it turns into a psychedelic piece, at least for the next two minutes. Then it slows down and morphs again, and again. This is one of the virtues of Corvus Stone, they change in every single second, they dare to change, which is something good.

"Sneaky Entrance to Lisa" is a 30-second interlude by Colin Tench. It leads to "Purple Stone", whose first seconds are dedicated to a car speeding up. Later the music enters in a rocky mood, with vocals by Blake Carpenter, so the sound is a bit more theatrical. It has nice details such as the bass lines, but I must say this is not my favorite song at all. "A Stoned Crow Meets the Rusty Wolff Ratt" is a longer composition, which contrasts a lot with the previous one. Here the sound is more delicate, it has acoustic guitar and nice atmospheric keyboards at first; later it changes and becomes rockier. After four minutes there is a nice passage where keyboards take leadership, adding that symphonic sound. The song runs and flows nicely, with maybe one or two pauses that I would omit. Of course, drums are great in this particular track.

Another short interlude comes with "Lisa has a Cigar", a classical track by Pasi Koivu. "Mr. Cha Cha" comes right away, a nice instrumental song with a cool rhythm and a rock style, I assume it is a kind of rendition (or maybe mockery) to the Cha Cha Cha genre, I don't know. "Dark Tower" is another interlude, a very nice one, this time with Carpenter's voice. "Scandinavians in Mexico" shares a nice even danceable tune, it actually sounds delicious, it is like a blend of rock, jazz and Latin rhythms. I have to say these guys are very talented, they have the capacity of creating great eclectic music through online ideas, and they have are capable of complementing each other's ideas, which give as a result these so different songs.

"Mystery Man" has again Carpenter's vocals. This track is pretty nice, atmospheric and melancholic; I liked how they slowed down here and show a slighter face of Corvus Stone, though after some minutes the song becomes deeper, more passionate, with a great guitar work. This is one of my favorite tracks. "Camelus Bactrianus" is sung by Timo Rautiainen and if I'm not wrong, lyrics are in Finnish, and though it is impossible for me to understand, the music and the vocal color makes it truly enjoyable, with a kind of somber mood, interesting. "Uncle Shunckle" is a wonderful instrumental track, another one of my favorites here. I think the musicianship is excellent, each and every instrument makes its own party, but at the same time, one leads to another and so on, I mean, they perfectly complement each other.

"Eternal Universe" is another very good track, this time sung by Phil Naro, and it returns to the softest side of Corvus Stone. But well, the epic comes next with "Moaning Lisa", a 14- minute piece where Sean Filkins sing, so it is pretty reminiscent to Big Big Train. The first five minutes are pretty sweet, pastoral, easy to dig and I would also say, beautiful. Then it begins to morph, the electric side appears (it was acoustic-driven at first), so a great blend of guitars put a wonderful atmosphere, while Filkins vocals become more passionate little by little, adding a nice diversity of elements such as Spanish folk, jazzy keyboards and heavier percussions. The music flows, I love how the song does not let you go, I mean, you remain interested and expecting new and new surprises. Their richness of sounds will keep you enthusiastic while listening to it, so what you have to do, is relax, enjoy the passages and let the music do the talking. Finally, "Campfire" provide the last two minutes of this excellent, challenging record.

I invite you to discover Corvus Stone's music, it is an amazing blend of genres and elements with a positive and satisfying result. Enjoy it!

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 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

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Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by Philly

5 stars I write here because I am surprised by this CD. It is the most fun album I have stumbled upon in a long time. It isn't a technical masterpiece or even 100% progressive. That is probably why it is so good. I only realized that this is their second album by the fact it is called Corvus Stone II. I never heard of most of the band members before. Phil Naro I do know of and he is, as usual, a brilliant singer. There are so many singers on here and they are all completely different but somehow you don't even realize that is happening as it is 50% an instrumental album. Everything and everyone fits and take me on a journey of surprises and fabulous musical turns. I read a Spanish review that says this is one of the most important progressive albums in history and it probably is! Why? I have no idea but it is just "one of those albums". I hope this makes sense.

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 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

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Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by robertwhowie2

5 stars I was first introduced to Mr. Colin Tench through another awesome guy, Eric Blackwood, the mastermind behind Edisons Children. I went and purchased Bunchakeze. Awesome, original, fresh and progressive. So I have set out to TRY and keep up with this unique talent and try and get everything he gets his hands on. His first record blew me away and this new one, Corvus Stone II is no exception. The unique way in which Colin and his group of fine musicians, Blake, Petri, Pasi, the awesome drummer, Robert, no stranger to prog music himself, is, to me, what makes this so special and fabulous. To be able to essentially mail in your parts and put together a record that sounds as it all the musicians are in the same room and have the tightness and "gel" that other bands have acquired through touring and jamming, is a true testament to the level of talent that is on this record. I highly recommend this and all of the Colin Tench projects if you love good music. There are so many styles here I cant begin to pin it down to one genre or another. Its good music to me and I will continue to follow Colin and all of his "bunch -a - kids" as long as they are around.

Robert

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 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

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Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by Second Life Syndrome
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Some bands improve with every effort, while some bands seem to think that they have reached the pinnacle of excellence already. Corvus Stone's debut was incredibly lackluster, seemingly wandering from pretention to botched musicianship in no time at all. In all honesty, when I saw the cover for the second album, simply named "II", I didn't have much hope for it either. Why? Well, this art to me represents an attempt at gaining interest from listeners through sex appeal rather than through great music. Despite all this, I decided to listen to it a few times.

I was correct. Corvus Stone's second effort is incrementally better than their first outing. I actually had hope after the first couple tracks, as some world music influences are apparent here. Yet, the band soon mostly drops these personality earmarks to go off once again into a world of short, meaningless songs; long, grinding tracks; incomplete, immature compositions; and strangely low quality musicianship. The album goes on and on, and I just wanted it to end. In fact, it seems to get worse as it progresses, though this may be my own annoyance with the music, rather than the actual composition.

I would love to know where the band comes up with their track names. It seems like they have a drinking party and then try to come up with the most bizarre names to tag onto songs that literally have nothing to do with the title most of the time. This style is simply not my thing. The tongue-in-cheek, boisterous approach may be something that others enjoy, and I suppose it could be a change of pace. However, I just can't seem to enjoy it. Corvus Stone's "II", however, isn't the worst thing I've heard this year, and it does have some enjoyable tracks in the first half. If you loved the first album, you will love this one, too. That's the highest praise I can give this album.

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 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

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Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by FragileKings
Prog Reviewer

4 stars For a while there wasn't a day when I didn't see two or three reviews of this album on the PA home page. Deep in my own exploration of progressive rock, I felt almost annoyed by new releases that begged to be heard. IQ's "Road of Bones", Opeth's "Pale Communion", two of which I managed to acquire, and Iamthemorning's sophomore release and the latest and last Pink Floyd, neither of which I have gotten a hold of yet but will get there. With my CD budget blown again for another year, Corvus Stone would have to wait. Except that some kind soul (you know who you are) felt that this album would be right up my preferential alley and offered to send me a copy if I thought I might like it. Good gravy! Talk about the gift of music. This was indeed an album I could enjoy.

I swore I would avoid a track by track run down, but this album is rather rich in really good progressive ROCK with lots of special flavours and assorted delicacies carefully placed on the table so that one may eat to his filling of tasty musical morsels not too hot and not too peculiar. If you are a fan of Deep Purple, seventies Rainbow, The Flower Kings, and other bands, perhaps Camel, with some great emphasis on guitar and keyboard playing supported by an active bass and drummer with good breeding, then this album should appeal. These guys are out to enjoy making music first and foremost. This is their band and it's for them. If you want to ride along, jump aboard!

"The Simple Life" is a surprising opening song that leaps straight into the music. I can hardly place where I've heard something like that before when the vocals come in and I am reminded of Peter Banks era Yes. Keyboards and guitar grab my attention but listen to that bass rumble.

Now a waltz with "Early Morning Call". Organ and some guitar moments that utter the name Blackmore. And do I detect a touch of old Camel in there? Or is it the Flower Kings? Perhaps something else. The moment has passed. A very pleasing piece of work, this instrumental.

And now for a great rock guitar instrumental that plays through a couple of different moods before a haunting desert theme emerges. But wait! This is not an instrumental. "Boots for Hire" features vocalist Stef Flaming. I picture a black-clad, rugged, middle-aged frontiersman with a black Stetson. But hey, Ian Gillan could have sung this as well. Not the young Gillan. The present day Gillan. The instrumental section transforms into a heavy prog number with a quick tempo and organ, almost like some classic proto-metal bit from the early seventies before the music glides smoothly back into the eerie desert music. "Sun is gone and all is brown" might recall Zeppelin's "Kashmir". This epic track takes a long slow journey through a desert twilight atmosphere before closing with some spooky keyboard sounds.

"Sneaky Entrance in to Lisa" is a short instrumental with a Spanish guitar feel and piano. It's pretty and it's over pretty quick. We'll have to wait to later to hear more of where that was going.

A revving engine, the screech of tires, and a Deep Purple salute. "Purple Stone" gets the Purple references on the table. "Yes, we like Deep Purple." And in case you are still in doubt, check out the artwork on the back of the CD booklet. It's four purple crow heads carved out of Mount Rushmore! Corvus Stone. Purple Stone. There you go. Two singers here, and my guess it's Blake Carpenter whose voice is the one I don't care too much for. The music rocks and rolls and there's organ and wah-wah guitar. A very cool and busy bass-line comes in twice. The lyric "Will I make it round the bend" has such potential for referencing insanity but instead concludes with, "or will I die?" Wait. Is this referencing "Trashed" by Black Sabbath? And then the Deep Purple tribute line, quoting a favourite classic also about a car. I have to admit that this is the first track that doesn't warm up to me like the rest of the album has. But it's shorter than my review of it.

Now another instrumental with "A stoned Crow meets the Rusty Wolff Ral" and a beautiful intro with acoustic guitar and gentle waves of synthesizer chords. It moves into a mid-tempo rock number that brings about some surprising time signature changes and some delightful snippets of weirdness. There's a flute-like synthesizer, heavy guitar, and organ. This piece will keep you guessing which way its going to turn for the first couple of minutes before the pattern establishes itself. A showcase mostly for guitar and keyboard but don't ignore the rhythm section.

"Lisa has a cigar" has me at a loss to describe the music. Something European. It's very nice and then it's over. And then there's "Mr. Cha Cha" which has a 1974 rock rhythm feel and has me thinking this could be Deep Purple meets Nektar. This could also be a salute to Rainbow Ritchie Blackmore, late seventies? Nice organ. And a change of pace with a strong mid to late seventies rhythm and synthesizer. That bass doesn't want to stay in the background. I'm suddenly reminded of "Son of Alerik", the bonus track on the "Perfect Strangers" reissue.

Tinkling piano, bass, guitar wails, and string synthesizer. Vocals come in. Strangely, this music brings to mind the band Iona for some reason. Interesting and a surprising sudden close. Such is "Dark Tower".

The much lauded "Scandinavians in Mexico" is not the Sonoran party track I had come to expect. The Mexican groove is modest and more like what a Mexican rock band might have striven for. Instead, just enjoy the lively rhythm and the synthesizer and guitar lead work. A great fun piece of music nonetheless.

Oh, look! A bass intro with a bit of mystery, accompanied by acoustic guitar and synthesizer. "Mystery Man" begins and the keyboards and guitar take turns trading quick exchanges. I find the lyrics a little obvious but the vocals are strong. The music takes us through various changes with slow acoustic parts and some harder heavier sections.

I wondered if this next song "Camelus Bactrianus (Tuolla tuonnempana)" would bear any resemblance to the music of the band Camel but it doesn't match what I know. It's sung in Finnish and the exotic language sits well with me because it suits the slow and sombre music at the start. Are we witnessing a march to a funeral? Then there's a change a we get a cool switch to an upbeat rock groove. I love how the song winds down, too.

"Uncle Schunkle" might just get my vote for coolest instrumental in the album. While we get lots of Colin Tench's master rock guitar, the rhythm in this track moves very coolly. The bass is really in there! And there are these abrupt changes in the groove of the rhythm that almost don't get noticed until after the change has occurred. Yes, this is a great piece but it ends too soon. Or is that a timely end after all?

A slow acoustic piece that sounds very early seventies in approach. Not quite Yes this time for "Eternal Universe" but with some good vocal parts. There's that sweet flute keyboard sound. At the close it sounds like the song will change gears and really get moving. Perhaps an Andean flute and guitar bit? But no. It just ends. Perhaps there was an opportunity missed here?

"Moaning Lisa" is actually a ballad in the original sense of the word about a woman whose father drowned at sea. As a result of her heartbreak she becomes a target for lustful men and eventually she joins her father, leaving her ghost to haunt the sea winds. The song features a blend of acoustic and electric with a hint of Spanish flavour, though there is more to this than my musical background can describe. The vocals have an accent which adds to the foreign feel. Surely though, even with all its non-traditional elements, this song can't help but dropping into a heavy rock passage that reminds me a bit of the band Armageddon, who cut one album in '75. This is a well-developed epic piece that keeps taking the listener into new territory. Catch the flowers-in-the-hair hippy folky passage before it returns to a Spanish ballad and then moves into an almost dance-able folk rock conclusion. Great music!

The final song is another Finnish one and a pleasant folky acoustic number, a suitable conclusion for an album that has given us plenty of rock and Spanish-flavoured acoustic music as well.

This album has proven to be a pleasant journey worth repeating anytime. No, I was not dancing in the aisles from the start. This is not an album for pulling off a few great tracks and whistling them in the shower and then getting back to the rest later. Like a hot spring spa, this is an album to sit back and soak up in order to appreciate. The person who sent me this was right in guessing this was my groove. It is an album I enjoy listening to from start to finish, and though there are a couple (only a couple) of tracks that I feel are just alright, I don't feel like skipping them.

Someone said the album was eclectic but I don't think so. Corvus Stone is a rock band with a strong seventies feel in the most positive way, and that can be heard in almost every track. The colour comes from the Spanish or other sounds and styles they merge so nicely with their music, meaning it's more than just a 70's tribute band. This is really good upper level rock with a flair for blending in folk and ethnic music.

I'm not giving this five stars for the simple reason that I am really now looking forward to their third album, hopefully to come in two year's time. I have yet to hear the debut, but based on the reviews and what I have heard here I strongly believe that Corvus a Stone will be one of those bands that really hit their mark on the third album. Many great bands produce their most historic work on either their third album or their third with key new members (Deep Purple, Yes, and Genesis for example). Corvus Stone are on the right path to producing one of the most phenomenal albums of the decade. If this was close to that then I have especially high expectations for Corvus Stone III!

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 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

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Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by zravkapt
Special Collaborator Post/Math Rock Team

4 stars The second album from this multi-national/studio only band is more consistent than the debut. However, the highs here are not as high as on the previous album. At the same time the lows here are not as low either. A lot of this album sure sounds like the work of the crew who came up with the last album, but there are also some new ideas here which are welcome. Like the debut this is made up of a lot of instrumental material. There seems to be a bit more vocals this time due to all the guest vocalists (the most well-known of the bunch probably being Big Big Train's Sean Filkins).

"The Simple Life" is a great opener. A short symphonic poppy tune. "Early Morning Call" is an easy-going bluesy symphonic rock instrumental. "Boots For Hire" is a very bluesy, almost Floydian track. Gets 'darker' and heavier sounding after the vocals arrive. After an almost jam like section gets more spacey sounding. "Purple Stone" is an obvious homage to Deep Purple. Includes a lyric from "Highway Star" (the same way a song from the debut briefly flirted with the riff to "Smoke On The Water"). "A Stoned Crow Meets the Rusty Wolff Rat" opens with some Spanish/classical acoustic guitar playing with symphonic keyboard backing. Then it goes into bluesy symph prog territory.

"Mr. Cha Cha" has a great rhythm section backed by soaring and emotional guitar playing. Nice symphonic keyboard work as well. Some good unison playing in spots. One of the highlights for sure. Another highlight is "Scandinavians In Mexico" (which has a cute animated video for it). Somewhat Santana-esque (especially the guitar soloing), the repeated harmony vocals (in Spanish I'm assuming) are catchy. Nice playful synth work. Interesting drumming/percussion at times as well. "Camelus Bactrianus (Tuolla tuonnempana)" is sung in Finnish. When I first heard the beginning of this song I was reminded of Boards Of Canada; it sounded so electronic and ambient compared to what I was expecting.

The track starts off mellow and moody with some drum rolls and tympani(?). Gets more rocking and upbeat later. Mellows out and gets more bluesy later still. "Eternal Universe" is a nice and pleasant ballad type song. Seems like single material and an album highlight to some, but to me it does very little. "Moaning Lisa" is the 14 minute epic which I didn't think much of when I first heard it but it grew on me. Starts out very classical sounding then gets more folky sounding. Generally, the whole thing comes off as 'prog folk'. Halfway through we get some interesting drumming and harmonica. Some Spanish at the end.

"Campfire (Tulen Luona)" is another song sung in Finnish. Mostly acoustic and folky sounding; no drums or percussion here. Nice way to end the album. Like the debut, the music here is diverse. Perhaps too diverse at times. If you enjoyed the first Corvus Stone you most likely will like this as well (maybe even more so). My final verdict will be a 3.5 but I'll round it up to 4 stars.

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 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

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Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by lazland
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Corvus Stone II. What is one to make of this lot, eh? If the Prog Archives reviews are to be believed, they have come up with a true masterpiece, one of the finest Prog albums ever to be set to record. Actually, some of the rather more obvious fan and family tributes made me swear not to have any part of the whole business, until guitarist Colin Tench (someone who I admire a great deal, and would love to meet and have a drink with) contacted me, and kindly posted a cd for me to review.

So, a masterpiece? No, but it is a mighty fine piece of work, which deserves to sit up there with the Premier League of modern Progressive Rock artists, and that is no small praise at all.

The album is such a massive contrast of styles that it is really difficult to pin it all down, and that, of course, is clearly the point. It is eclectic wrought fine. We begin with lovely late 60's type psych/pop on openers The Simple Life and the sunny Early Morning Call, two of the brightest and most cheerful album openers in many a year.

What to make of Boots For Hire? Some delicious guitar work, especially, with lyrics from a dystopian screenplay chucked in for good measure. Here, the music moves in a huge contrast from the opening sunshine. Far darker, and heavier, in tone and scope. It's good (very good, actually, especially for fans of classic rock), but the Iistener is somewhat unprepared for such a contrast.

So, now, your reviewer is at a similar stage to when he was preparing to write his review about the debut album. Do you (politely) mention, and imply criticism of, the lack of "consistency", or style, or do you just go with the flow, and merely accept what this band are, and are about, and sit back, listen, and enjoy, soaking it all in. I am glad to say I have opted for the latter course this time around.

Because, when this lot are good, they are very good. Take the closing two tracks, which are the stunning Moaning Lisa (featuring a true star on vocals in Sean Filkins, and a marvellous South American, German Vergara, who should be), the longest track here, and a true prog fan's delight, and the much needed come down track, Campfire. They are two of the finest pieces of music I have heard all year and are, in truth, worth the admission price alone. Pure excellence in modern prog. For good measure, we also have a huge nod to classic Prog, flutes an' all, in Eternal Universe.

Blake Carpenter, one of my favourite modern era artists, features strongly on vocals (maintaining a positive link with the Corvus Stone regulars, and strong enough to make me look forward more to the planned Minstrel's Ghost album), although I could well have done without the silly Purple Stone, a Deep Purple "tribute", even including original lyrics, which is just, to my mind, "different" for the sake of being different. It certainly adds nothing to some of the beauty which surrounds it. Contrast this with the far too short Dark Tower, which is thoughtful, intelligent, and could have been an album story in itself. I just love Blake's contribution on this, and his final effort, the lovely prog ballad, Mystery Man.

We have some almost stoner meanderings in the heavily classic rock influenced A Stoned Crow Meets The Rusty Wolff Rat (no contest, chaps, song title of the decade is yours), Lisa Has a Cigar, and Mr Cha Cha (just love those Jon Lord Hammond keys on the latter). The meanderings do, though, grate somewhat on the disappointing chants of Scandinavians In Mexico.

And, as if all of the above were not enough for you all to be getting on with, we have a fantastic Finnish contribution on vocals from Timo Rautianen, in his native language. I don't understand a word of Camelus Bactrianus, but I sure do appreciate the darkness contained within. Did I say darkness? It could, I feel, be easily compared with the inside of a duck's anus, but, by God, it is damned good stuff with its rhythmic drums, swirling keys, and brooding atmosphere.

So, pop psych, to classic rock, to stoner meanderings, to classic Prog rock. Confused? Well, you will be, but don't worry about it. This is a band for whom it is impossible to categorise, and I finally get it. They don't want to be categorised. They just want to play, go where the music takes them, and invite you, the listener, to share a fun, if strange, journey. Join them. You will, I promise, enjoy.

Lastly, here, a mention for the lovely Sonia Mota's (Kati of this parish's forum) staggering artwork, which is standout incredible. Hugs, indeed!

Four stars. An excellent album which comes highly recommended.

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 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

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Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by Evolver
Special Collaborator Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams

5 stars I don't know about the rest of you prog fans out there, but I have learned to look forward to every new album that features Colin Tench (and there are quite a few of them each year). His guitar never ceases to delight me. It's not that he dazzles with speed and technicality, although he does seem to be a master at many styles, it's that he always seems to know the right notes to play to make me want to listen more. And with Corvus Stone, he has found a band of equals in that respect.

Corvus Stone has managed to improve upon their wonderful debut album by just playing what they like. And what they like is sometimes psychedelic, or smoky art-blues, or Santana-ish jams, fusion, or even a prog-folk epic. There is not a bad track to be found here.

Each track intrigues as full-band arrangements, but also remains interesting when, as I often do, one listens to each instrument individually. I particularly enjoy Tench's David-Torn-like string pops and bends, and his and keyboardist Pasi Koivu's work on the track "Mystery Man". Petri Lemmy Lindström and Robert Wolff's intentionally stumbling rhythm on "Uncle Schunkle" gives me eargasms, and the aforementioned prog-folk epic, "Moaning Lisa" should not be missed.

I honestly cannot put into words just how much this album has lifted my spirits (at a time when I really needed it. Many thanks to the band and all the guest artists for this one.

And on a side note, Sonia Mota's ("Kati" here at Progarchives.com) cover is a sexy masterpiece, a perfect adornment for this album.

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 Corvus Stone II by CORVUS STONE album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.11 | 254 ratings

BUY
Corvus Stone II
Corvus Stone Crossover Prog

Review by Guillermo
Prog Reviewer

4 stars I was asked recently to listen to this album and to write a review about it.

It is hard for me to try to place this band in only one musical style category, because this album shows them playing several musical styles: some Hard Rock with some influences from DEEP PURPLE; some Jazz-Rock music influences; some Latin Rock music influences; some Symphonic Prog music influences, particularly from YES; some World Music influences (Arabian, Flamenco, English and Spanish Folk music). All played with energy almost all the time and with good arrangements. The band is a multi-national quartet which consists of Colin Tench (guitars ), Petri Lemmy Lindström (bass), Pasi Koivu (keyboards) and Robert Wolff (drums & percussion), assisted by several lead singers and one percussionist. They also have the contributions from Sonia Mota for the album artwork and for the making of some videos for their songs. All the musical influences make an interesting musical mixture for my taste. Unfortunately, I could not understand the lyrics of the songs because, not being a native English language speaker, I could not listen to them very clearly in the album, and also I realized that some of the lyrics were not sung in the English language, and being a digital download, unfortunately I could not find the lyrics in the web. There is the name "Lisa" listed in three of the titles of the songs, but I could not understand who the "Lisa" character is and if there is a lyrical and musical concept connection between the songs of the album and even with the cover artwork. Anyway, all the musicians who are members of this band and the other contributors to this album are very good. The recording and mixing are very good too, and I also like the cover artwork. The most accessible songs for my taste are "Scandinavians in Mexico" (a Latin Music song which sounds to me a bit influenced by SANTANA and by the song "Mozambique" from TRAFFIC`s "Far From Home " album) which also has a funny video made by Sonia Mota that is available in youtube; "Eternal Universe" (with good musical atmospheres), and "Moaning Lisa".

This is an interesting album from CORVUS STONE, very well played and produced. Maybe a bit long in length (with a duration of almost 80 minutes, the equivalent to the duration of a double LP album), but very good anyway.

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