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Midas - Beyond The Clear Air CD (album) cover

BEYOND THE CLEAR AIR

Midas

 

Symphonic Prog

4.01 | 40 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Jbagwell
4 stars I first discovered Midas while searching different progressive rock bands on youtube. The song that first grabbed me was Sham Noctiluca and then Beyond the Clear air. I was still new to prog-rock and so i found the new songs to be daunting in a way but after listening in full i was hooked. I purchased ac copy of the 2009 musea/poseidon reissue complete with the bonus track 'Green Forest'. Unfortunately as the kyrics are all in Japanese i will be unable to comment on those but i will do my best to critique the music and production.

Sham Noctiluca - The opening track to the album bursts in with a steady yet epic introduction, opening the abum perfectly. Structure itself is quite simple with the intro then main section and closing with a reprise of the intro again. The main section of the song is a fast battle between synthesizer and violin where the vocals are abcent. Although being 8 minutes long the track seems to end quite quickly.

The Slough of Despond - Probably one of if not my favourite songs on the album (although there are not that many to choose from in the first place). The song opens with a quiet and forboding keyboard section and brings in the rest of the band concurrently. Suitably the song contains many different sections throughout and lasts around 15 minutes exploring odd time signatures various tempos and complex composition. It is Midas' second longest song in thier library beaten by the Title track.

Mortuary - This short song has an interesting european feeling to it with the addition of harmonica/accordian sounds added in by keyboard. The song itself is only around 4 minutes long but it sits nicely on the second half of the album and readies you for the title track in a way.

Beyond the Clear Air - The title ttack is what i consider to be a symphonic masterpeice almost with a few flaws. It starts slow with piano and violin. This leads into an ominous slow section and the first vocals. More time signature/ tempo changes and synth strings later we come to a long instrumental section with again more battles between the synth lead and violin. Half way through we return to the ominous sounding keyboards and violin. This leads into a very beutiful violin solo from Eigo Utoh and the onto the final sections of the song, closing in the same fashion as Sham Noctiluca with a reprise of the intro.

Green Forest (2009 Bonus Track) - The bonus track released with my copy is ok. The song has a similar structure to Sham Noctiluca and Beyond the Clear air however it feels clumsy compared to those. As far as i am aware this song was a previously unreleaesed song they recorded a year or two prior to this album. Negatives aside the middle section contains a very nice piano solo from Eisho Lynn.

Mixing/Production - The production on this album is quite good however i do not know if the version i own is a remix or just the original mix re-released. Excluding the bonus track the instruments are all well placed and nothing really clashes although the bass and kick drum can sometimes get overshadowed by eisho lynns synth strings.

Overall the album itself is definatelly worth getting for an interesting experience. I personally have become a big fan of midas and own all but one of their albums so if i was personnaly recomending banns to a friend i might consider them important but critically they are not one of the mose key bands to include in your collection.

I hope my review was good and informative, thanks for reading!

Jbagwell | 4/5 |

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