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Renaissance - Novella CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.75 | 397 ratings

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Frankie Flowers
4 stars There's no doubt this is an exquisite album. I have read reviews complaining that sonically 'Novella' has the same old sound as Renaissance's previous albums, but I have always felt it is different and has more of a diversity of moods, even more so than on other releases. I totally agree that Annie Haslam's vocals reach a peak here. 'Can You Here Me' opens with the typical strings, and piano but it has a lovely, quiet dreamy passage reminiscent of some Genesis pieces. 'Sisters' has the most harrowing, tragic theme and the most touching of all Renaissance music I have heard to date. It is absolutely beautiful and leaves me with goosebumps every time. The use of more acoustic guitar is noticeable on Novella as well as different keyboard sounds which were used on Scheherazade as well to create great atmosphere, on this album though the arrangements also create spiritual dimensions especially on 'Midas Man'. It is just brilliant and includes chants and other harmonies in the mix. The first half of the album is really reflective while the second half is brighter and more typical of the band's sound, melodic and uplifting. The closing and second epic piece has an excellent build up and the nice Russian style piano is showcased. Make no mistake Novella is a well written, eclectic release and the creative juices were still flowing in this group! It should be in a fan's collection.
Frankie Flowers | 4/5 |


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