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FOREVER TWELVE

Symphonic Prog • United States


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Forever Twelve biography
This American quintet has given me an hour filled with fine progressive music. The eight compositions (between 5 and 14 minutes) have got a warm sound, good ideas and plenty of variation. Particularly the combined playing of the keyboards and the guitar sounds strong and solid, but also the changes from dreamy parts into fluent rhythms are well done. The female singer has a nice voice but sometimes she should have sounded a bit more powerful.

Though the general level of this CD is very much acceptable, the second part sounds like it has been worked out with more refinement. Beautiful pieces with classical piano, fine keyboard parts, fierce guitar and a lot of variation in the longest track "Victor's Eye" (over 13 minutes), a fluent and pounding rhythm with beautiful synthesizer patterns and heavy basspedals in "Burning Ink", divine keyboards (from sparkling piano to majestic choir-Mellotron) in the MARILLION-like "Slogans Of Compliance" and Gregorian vocals (intro) and strong combined keyboard/guitar-playing in closing track "The Quest". This band has made a real fine debut-album with warm, 24-carat progrock which should especially appeal to fans of MARILLION, CLEPSYDRA or FLAMBOROUGH HEAD. They still need to grow a bit in composing, because you can hear some compositions don't sound supple enough. But it's a very promising band, maybe their next album will be CD of the month.

: : : Erik Neuteboom, The NETHERLANDS : : :
Fan & official Prog Archives collaborator

Forever Twelve official website

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FOREVER TWELVE Videos (YouTube and more)


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Buy FOREVER TWELVE Music


Remembrance BranchRemembrance Branch
Self-Produced 2006
Audio CD$12.00
$8.99 (used)
Taking ForeverTaking Forever
CD Baby 2010
Audio CD$13.79
Spark of LightSpark of Light
Self-Produced 2006
Audio CD$12.00
$7.39 (used)

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FOREVER TWELVE discography


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

3.29 | 10 ratings
Remembrance Branch
2002
3.13 | 5 ratings
Spark of Light
2004
4.11 | 9 ratings
Taking Forever
2010

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

FOREVER TWELVE Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

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FOREVER TWELVE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Remembrance Branch by FOREVER TWELVE album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.29 | 10 ratings

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Remembrance Branch
Forever Twelve Symphonic Prog

Review by apps79
Special Collaborator Neo Prog Team

3 stars Another US prog band coming from the mainstream city of angels,Los Angeles.They were formed in 1993 under the forces of keyboardist Steve Barberic and bassist Kevin Hundt.By 2000 the main core of the band had finished with the addition of Fernando Martinez on drums,Cat Stevens on vocals and flute and Tom Graham on guitars.The first album of the band ''Remembrance Branch'' was released in 2002 on Radio Massacre International.

Forever Twelve offer dreamy but also rather complex Symphonic Prog in their debut with a very rich content and adventurous compositions.US legends like CATHEDRAL,LIFT,ETHOS,HANDS but also bands like EARTH AND FIRE and GENESIS pop out in mind whilst listening.The overall style falls somewhere between intricate and challenging instrumental passages and ethereal mellow vocal-led sections with an atmospheric vibe.The tracks are rather long with a number of shifting moods,compositionally the band stands very well despite some unfocused moments.Keyboard work is varied and professional with plenty of organ parts,mellotron waves and moog synth solos,but also some cheap synth sounds,while guitarist Tom Graham prooves to be a gifted musician,very balanced player with his style ranging from melodic soloing to slightly jazzy hooks in the vein of FOCUS.Unfortunately Cat Stevens' voice leaves a bittersweet taste,as she can't seem to explode the level of the music to higher grounds.

''Remembrance Branch'' is a well-crafted album for all fans of Symphonic and Classic Progressive Rock with strong vintage influences and the final taste,while not being by any means extra-ordinary,is decent enough to follow the band's progress through the years.Recommended.

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 Remembrance Branch by FOREVER TWELVE album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.29 | 10 ratings

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Remembrance Branch
Forever Twelve Symphonic Prog

Review by kenethlevine
Special Collaborator Prog-Folk Team

3 stars My first reaction was, wow, are these guys really American? Unlike the in-your-face example of contemporaries like Spock's Beard and old timers like Kansas, Forever Twelve plays with an understated style that is decidedly British, but it is also very much their own.

One of my favourite features of the best songs is the jazzy/funky guitar style full of subtleties, and the way the rhythym section supports it bouncily. As a result, Forever Twelve is prog that actually rocks without the slightest metallic tint. Cat Ellen sings somewhere between Jane Relf (Renaissance/Illusion) and Jenny Hahn (Babe Ruth), while not sounding particularly like either.

While the songs are long, they generally have purpose and a sense of direction, although this breaks down a bit on the longest piece, Victor's Eye, and the last couple of cuts don't measure up to what came before, particularly from a compositional standpoint, but "Edge of Reality" parlays a gorgeous melody into a worthy arrangement of synths and the aforementioned guitars. But the real gem is the 9 minute "Here Again", which stands up to many a prog/neo prog classic, while not really being comparable to any. It masterfully shed several skins during its tenure only to re-emerge stronger than ever. This song alone makes the album a buy. "Burning Ink" is more uptempo and its highlight is the mysterious spacey sounding theme that surfaces about halfway through.

How delightful that a modern band can produce a modern album with so much that is brimming with originality and energy, even if the work as a whole is not entirely consistent.

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 Spark of Light by FOREVER TWELVE album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.13 | 5 ratings

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Spark of Light
Forever Twelve Symphonic Prog

Review by bhikkhu
Special Collaborator Symphonic Prog Team

3 stars Forever Twelve is a very strong classic-style prog group. It's a shame that "Spark of Light" is their most recent release. Once again they have pulled together to create well-crafted modern symphonic prog for the old school fan. As was the case with the debut, it is still difficult to pin down primary influences. However, while I felt Genesis in the debut, this one has more of a Yes vibe (with a touch of E.L.P.). It is much more upbeat, and the instrumentation feels more Squire, Wakeman, and Howe inspired.

Once again they have delivered a very strong effort, yet something seems to missing from this one. It is not quite as dynamic, and I feel a certain lack of urgency that was present on "Remembrance Branch." There was hardly a dull moment before, but "Spark of Light" drags in a few places (especially at the end). Don't get me wrong this is still a very good album. I happened to get both CDs at the same time, so I can't help but compare them.

All in all, I can highly recommend this album. If you have to choose between the two, figure out whether you want something darker, or lighter. If it doesn't matter, get the debut first. But you probably won't be disappointed with "Spark of light" either. I say 3.25 stars, so it will be rounded down to 3.

H.T. Riekels

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 Remembrance Branch by FOREVER TWELVE album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.29 | 10 ratings

BUY
Remembrance Branch
Forever Twelve Symphonic Prog

Review by bhikkhu
Special Collaborator Symphonic Prog Team

4 stars Forever Twelve is a modern group, doing prog in the classic style. Their debut album shows this in every track. Somehow they mange to keep it from feeling dated. You can tell that there is heavy influence from the big acts of the '70s, but it's hard to pin down specific ones. I tend to sense a more of a Genesis influence on "Remembrance Branch." There is also no denying a bit of Renaissance in Cat Ellen's voice.

These are quality musicians and songwriters. The passages are well played, and complexity abounds. Cat's voice can be a bit thin at times, but it is very pretty. She also has a slight nasal quality that gives her distinctiveness. While there is no overt virtuosity, this group's chops cannot be denied.

This is a moody and dynamic album, with some bright and catchy spots. It features one lengthy epic, and there are breaks between the tracks, but there is a common thread throughout. There are repeated themes, but it never gets dull. They also have a tendency to surprise you when you least expect it. All of this is very well done, yet there is no new ground broken here.

For anyone who wants to hear classic-style prog, done in the modern age, this is for you. It's a very enjoyable album. I rate it 3.5, so I will round up to 4.

H.T. Riekels

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 Remembrance Branch by FOREVER TWELVE album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.29 | 10 ratings

BUY
Remembrance Branch
Forever Twelve Symphonic Prog

Review by erik neuteboom
Prog Reviewer

3 stars This American quintet has given me an hour filled with fine progressive music. In general the eight compositions (between 5 and 14 minutes) contain a warm sound, good ideas and plenty of variation. Particularly the combined playing of the keyboards and the guitar sounds strong and solid, but also the changes from dreamy parts into fluent rhythms are well done. The female singer has a nice voice but sometimes she should have sounded a bit more powerful. Though the general level of this CD is very much acceptable, the second part sounds like it has been worked out with more refinement. Beautiful pieces with classical piano, fine keyboard parts, fierce guitar and a lot of variation in the longest track "Victor's Eye" (over 13 minutes), a fluent and pounding rhythm with beautiful synthesizer patterns and heavy basspedals in "Burning Ink," divine keyboards (from sparkling piano to majestic choir-Mellotron) in the Marillion-like "Slogans Of Compliance" and Gregorian vocals (intro) and strong combined keyboard/guitar-playing in closing track "The Quest." This band has made a real fine debut-album with warm, 24-carat progrock which should appeal especially to fans of Marillion, Clepsydra or Flamborough Head. They still need to mature in composing but this is a promising band.


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