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Rebekka - Labyrinth CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

2.67 | 13 ratings

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2 stars Only two years had lapsed since Rebekka's debut, "Phoenix", when "Labyrinth" was released, but their change in sound is marked, transitioning from a rather unique symphonic rock band, with jazz and folk touches to a power pop prog band admittedly with traces of their German origins and the benefit of a good female singer. If you are familiar with Epidaurus and what happened between "Earthly Paradise" and "Endangered", then you get the idea, but Rebekka did it in a much shorter time frame. While their debut was more of a 1970s album in feel, this one is firmly ensconced in its decade, with very little real progression happening within the songs, just rehashes of themes and moods. This is remarkable considering how the previous album would wander from the mellow to the intense freely and relatively convincingly.

The opener "Kein Mensch mehr da" is one of three sung in German, and it is perhaps the hardest rocking, in a manner of Eloy's Metromania which was released around the same time, but it is ultimately unconvincing, in contrast to two other uptempo tracks, "Out of Sight", which finds a nice groove and features impressive vocalizations by Marion Weldert, and the rollicking "Lass mich aus". "Gipsy's Campsite" is probably the most reminiscent of the Phoenix album, and would not be out of place there. In terms of ballads, which is most of the album really, they run from the mundane and interminable, "Bygone Song" and "Gutes Nachtlied" closing pair, to the barely passable pure pop of "No More to Say", to the very pleasant "Harvest". which reminds me of a cross between Relf's and Haslam's Renaissance, and features a short but sweet flute-lead guitar transition before the chorus reprises.

While definitely a small p prog rock album, "Labyrinth" is decent for its era, and has a reasonable ratio of good tunes to clunkers. It's really 2.5 stars, rounded down because the only really distinct feature of this band in 1984 was the gender of its talented singer, and prog bands should show a little more pizzazz than that.

kenethlevine | 2/5 |


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