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Gryphon - Red Queen to Gryphon Three CD (album) cover




Prog Folk

4.15 | 727 ratings

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Pawned Heart
5 stars This is probably my favorite album of all time. The Gryphon boys, with their promising debut and oh-so-close to masterful Midnight Mushrumps, finally hit gold on their 3rd time around. There is no way this is anything less than blissful perfection, an amazing masterpiece of not only progressive rock but of all music of all time.

I don't make such grandiose statements lightly. This album is just THAT incredible. The band brings in a wide array of acoustic instruments, from recorders to krumhorns to bassoons to bass guitars, each one serving an incredible and worthwhile purpose, doing much more than meaninglessly spicing up the album's inside cover. No, each instrument's timbre and strength is duly noted and beautifully expressed throughout the record. The result is just incredible.

Again, the wide array of instruments are more than just flashy. Gryphon can compose some awesome music. Each of the four songs is incredible, going through meaningful progressions, time signiture changes, instrument changes, all the while maintaining instrumental themes which build up to amazing climaxes. By the 3rd or 4th listen, you begin to crave the ending of Opening Moves or that middle section from Lament. They are just too good.

Another remarkable thing about this album is just how different it is. There is no extensive soloing, no elements added "for prog's sake", and there is neither a sense of seriousness nor silliness. The music is just that - music. Music that can be appreciated AND enjoyed. Additionally, the music is set up so that you get different experiences listening on a song by song basis than the entire album. Whereas some discs are clearly meant to be listened to in its entirety (e.g. Camel's The Snow Goose), and others are just a collection of songs, this manages to be both. It is breathtaking as a whole, and breathtaking as individual songs.

This album receives my absolute highest recommendation, a must for any prog fan, even if you don't feel like it will be your "type" of music. I wouldn't change a thing on this album, it is simply incredible, perfect, bliss. The easiest 5 stars I'll ever give.

Pawned Heart | 5/5 |


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