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7 Ocean - Таинственная раса странных существ / The Mysterious Race of Strange Entities CD (album) cover

Таинственная раса странных существ / THE MYSTERIOUS RACE OF STRANGE ENTITIES

7 Ocean

 

Symphonic Prog

3.12 | 21 ratings

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apps79
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Rare case of Belarusian Prog by 7 Ocean, a group formed in 1989 in Gomel by Alexander Eletsky (keyboards, vocals), Igor Mihasev (drums, vocals), Gennady Kalaurkin (guitar, vocals) and Vitaly Gaponenko (bass, vocals) with two early albums under their belt, the cassette ''One life" (1989) and ''Black holes'' (1990).At this point Mihasev quits and he was replaced by Alexander Sofiks, while 7 Ocean headed for a third album ''The son of the sun'' (1991), which was said to be in an epic Prog Rock style ala Van Der Graaf Generator.Mihasev returned in the line-up and another studio effort, ''Find the echo'', is recorded by the original crew.Sadly Mihasen died in 1994, leading to the disbandement of 7 Ocean.10 years later the band would reform with old members Eletsky and Sofiks along with new bassist Sergei Starosotsky and they were signed by MALS for a worldwide debut in 2008 under the epic title ''The mysterious race of strange entities''.

A trio of bass/keyboards/drums with occasional guitar lines played by Eletsky couldn't sound much different than an E.L.P.-like band and the music of 7 Ocean is actually along the lines of Symphonic Rock with some Electronic orientations and sporadic jazzy moments.They are pretty similar to premature LITTLE TRAGEDIES with a tendency towards organic music with strong Classical influences and big orchestral movements, but they also sound a bit different at some point.That's because 7 Ocean and Eletsky in particular delivers plenty of singing lines (in Russian or Belarusian, I do not know exactly), trying to keep a balance between vocal and instrumental passages.But the result is often far from exciting.Not because of the vocals, which are not bad neither very good, but mainly due to a much synthetic sound, heavily relying on keyboards, effects and samplers, eventually producing a digital, mechanical atmosphere.That's a shame, as 7 Ocean could create some cool soundscapes of Electronic- and Classical-oriented ambiences during the listening process as well as some fiery keyboard pyrotechnics.The second part of the album fortunately containsd some stronger and more natural pieces, like the bombastic and deeply symphonic ''On the threshold'', the short ''Short stories'' with the delicate violin parts and the omnipresent organ or the dense ''Conclusions'' with the everachanging breaks between piano, synths and organ.Not accidentally the more beautiful parts of the album are the ones where the charming sound of acoustic guitar is added for a deeper, more convincing and natural sound.

Glad to see these guys fight back against the previous fate, which caused the loss of their drummer.But I would be even more pleased to see them come back with a more definite, physical instrumentation and less sampling parts.Not a bad album, if you like the early stages of LITTLE TRAGEDIES you will propably like this one as well...2.5 stars.

apps79 | 2/5 |

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