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Windchase - Symphinity CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.18 | 83 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
1 stars This can be viewed as the third Sebastian Hardie album, with a slightly changed line-up: the Pavlic brothers getting the boot and replaced by a more efficient rhythm section. They had to change the name because it was related to the brother's legacy (both Pilt and Millo arrived in SH as the Pavlic bros were already there) and this was for the better: a less ridiculous and error-inducing name, the dropping of that ugly logo. So they chose to rename themselves after the name of their SH second album, Windchase and as a quartet (still the basic prog quartet) will record one last album, musically fairly close to the predecessors. But whatever flaws were apparent in the Hardie, are also here quite evident, maybe even multiplied. Plagued by poor production (some vocals are completely boxed-in, but then again given the overall quality, this might just be a blessing in disguise), the album roams aimlessly between Camel, some Yes, some Genesis, none of them being actually properly paid homage to.

Plagued with an atrociously pretentious title (symphinity. yeaaaaaah, riiiiight!!!), a ridiculous sci-fi heroic-fantasy D-series comics artwork and the Dean-like logo, this gatefold album unfortunately presents all of the clichés that were becoming the target of laughter by the album's date of release. Musically we are still close to ultra- symphonic prog ala Camel (with Floyd hints in the solos) even if Millo is allowing Pilt to write as much tracks as he does (4 each, with both writing a short solo piece), but overall this album is hardly an improvement on their previous two. There are some incredibly cheesy moments (the atrocious singing of Glad To Be Alive and its horrendous string arrangements) poor songwriting (No Scruples, opening the flipside) and awful AOR pop song (the closing Flight Call and its kitsch sitar-styled solo) that makes this album a complete embarrassment.

The (much) better tracks are the ultra-derivative Gypsy, and the no-less derivative but good instrumental Lamb's Fry (both of them presenting a slight Caravan-esque atmosphere), but let's face it, this hardly enough to save the album from drowning to Marianna Trench-depth. BTW, the Cd reissues come with a bonus track, a live version of the title track, which brings nothing more to the disastrous results.

In short, this album is nothing short of laughable and probably shown as the prime exhibit for prog's trial by the music industry, as it cumulates all of the clichés (visual and aural) that makes it an obscene insult to the wax it is unscrupulously laid upon. An utter and blatant self-inflicted masturbationary fantasy dung.

Staaayyyy awaaaayyyy from this one!!!!!!

Sean Trane | 1/5 |


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