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Lifesigns - Lifesigns CD (album) cover





3.85 | 241 ratings

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5 stars I have to thanks Amazon for initially alerting me to this CD which stood out thanks to the wonderful cover photo (apparently taken at speed on the M6). I was then also sent details of it on Facebook by John Young himself.

At first listen, this is an album that appears to contain nice, melodic if slightly "easy listening" prog music, however it's unlike most prog albums I've ever heard in that it slowly reveals itself to you over time as you begin to appreciate the vocal harmonies, the intricate melodies, the standard of musicianship and the wonderful songs. I've been playing this regularly over the last 18 months or so and I'm still hearing new bits.

The band consists of John Young (who wrote all the songs), prog bassist de jour Nick Beggs, ex-Cutting Crew drummer Frosty Beedle as well as guest musicians Steve Hackett, Jakko Jakszyk and Thijs van Leer (who contributes some wonderful flute).

Highlights? There are many - the thundering bass riff of "Fridge Full of Stars", the flute solo in the same song, the Chapman Stick on "Telephone", the blistering guitar at the start of "Carousel" and the wonderful riff played simultaneously on flute, bass and guitar that pops up at regular intervals throughout the same song.

So this is an album to listen to and cherish as it slows reveals itself to you throughout repeated listens. There are no obvious reference points although some of it has an It Bites feel to it. If you like melodic prog but want something with depth to it, then you need this album. I saw the band perform it live last night - I did wonder if they would be able to reproduce it live but they managed it brilliantly. If you can catch them live, don't miss them!

5 stars all the way, best prog album of the last 5 years.

chopper | 5/5 |


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