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Purple - 11 Bells CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

2.50 | 2 ratings

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2 stars Welsh musician Dan Hodgson was born in the city of Bangor and grew up in York, where he came in touch with music already as a kid, taking violin and piano lessons as well as singing in choirs.At the age of 15 he was given his first guitar and since graduating from university he had become an accomplished bassist and guitarist.He developed further his musical skills, while his envolvement with computers helped him on creating his own music.In 2008 under the moniker of Purple he released his debut album ''11 bells'', free downloadable from the project's website.

The album consists of 12 5-min. long instrumentals, where each of the 11 bells announces the passing from one piece to another.Musically the hour-long album is a crossover of Art Rock styles with an evident MIKE OLDFIELD vibration, alternating between melodic instrumental themes or synth-drenched soundscapes and folky textures with additional Celtic inspirations.Hodgson's effort to come up with a multi-influenced work is pretty decent, the execution though lacks the obvious advantages of a more professional production.The nervous synthesizers and the awful drum programming become annoying already from the first minute, while even some piano lines seem to have been recorded out of the cheapest equipment, having a totally amateur, plastic sound.Another problem seems to be the incosistency of the work regarding the diverse styles.As individual pieces some of the tracks have a nice listening value.A couple of them, having a more upfront style and a fair amount of energy, recall ELEGANT SIMPLICITY, containing good electric grooves and angular keyboards in a typical slightly CAMEL-flavored Neo Prog vein, while most of Hodgson's OLDFIELD-ian soundscapes sound quite dreamy with the use of pipes and the delicate acoustic guitars.The keyboard-dominated pieces are the less interesting by far, hurting the album in a certain degree next to the childish drumming.Unfortunately these take about 1/3 of ''11 bells'', placed sporadically among the better pieces and ruin the whole listening.

This is a free download from Purple's website, so anyone can taste ''11 bells'' by himself.Personally I found this work to be rather dissapointing, even more because Hodgson seems to be a talented musician and the amount of amateur pieces on this effort totally spoil his image and potential.

apps79 | 2/5 |


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