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Citizen Cain - Raising The Stones CD (album) cover

RAISING THE STONES

Citizen Cain

 

Symphonic Prog

3.19 | 80 ratings

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apps79
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Citizen Cain's long career was always problematic, but heading to the third studio album these issues started to become a bit too serious.First comes the dissolution of the SI label, but fortunately Cyclops would be there to support the band (and eventually re-release its entire back-catalogue).Second comes the reduction of the performing crew.With most of the material written for the new work Cyrus and Bell were counting on the presence of Alistair MacGregor on guitar.As he was of Australian citizenship and his visa was about to expire, MacGregor had to travel back to Australia, the result was that Bell and Cyrus had to rewrite the material, which was now heavily based on keyboards.Andy Heatlie provided the sole natural guitar parts of the first track and the album was released in 1997 as ''Raising the stones''.

With the band being always fond of long and emphatic compositions, ''Raising the stones'' couldn't escape the rule.70 minutes of Retro Prog in the vein of GENESIS with three pieces clocking longer than 10 minutes.''Last days of Cain'' is a great opener, featuring Heatlie on lead guitar, and coming as a complete effort of theatrical Symphonic Rock with impressive synth flights and some harsichord work by Bell, the sinister voice of Cyrus and the measured but well-needed guitar plays of our guest.From this point on the album becomes heavily keyboard-oriented with some sampled instrumentation displayed, exploring the historic style of GENESIS, but being much more complex in nature, while Citizen Cain's lyrical moments and orchestral parts have a quite dark atmosphere.Good enough reason to compare the group with the less shiny side of MARILLION.The compositions remain impressive, unbelievably dense for a duo, with many complicated instrumental ideas, providing a set of unique atmospheres (including some programmed strings).Neo Prog with a blistering sound and monumental symphonic overtones, maybe a bit too much keyboard-based, but always coming up with a great quality of compositions, based on fast grooves, dual keyboard flashes and odd breaks.Typical CC stuff until the very end.Sort of...because the closing ''Silently seeking Euridice'' has to be one of the better songs written by CC, a bit different than their usual offerings.Romantic parts combine with a strong MARILLION-esque atmosphere, big orchestral moves and lovely symphonic strings, featuring a timeless vocal performance by Cyrus.Absolutely brilliant.

These guys could play.''Raising the stones'' is not inferior compared to the rest of the Citizen Cain albums and if you like Genesis-styled Prog Rock this was made for you.Strongly recommended due to some fantastic instrumental parts, vocal lines and the reckless efforts of Bell and Cyrus...3.5 stars.

apps79 | 3/5 |

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