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Kansas - The Prelude Implicit CD (album) cover

THE PRELUDE IMPLICIT

Kansas

 

Symphonic Prog

3.81 | 298 ratings

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Tarcisio Moura
Prog Reviewer
4 stars Ok, Ive got to admit: Im impressed. Very impressed. Kansas`s first studio album after 16 years was not something I was waiting eagerly. After all, I could not think of this band without Steve Walsh. Secondly, it seemed that the band really needed at least one Kerry Livgren song on the album to make it worthwhile. And now reduced to only two original members (guitarist Rich Williams and the indefatigable drummer Phil Ehart), none of them much of songwriters themselves, how could the "new" Kansas be of ay relevance, or even interest?

Well, thanks to some correct choices of new recruits, the band really resurrected from the ashes (the Phoenix on the cover is no coincidence). Not only they chose the right people to play, they also had some strong and convincing material to release. First think youll probably notice is how Ronnie Platt did the seemly impossible task of replacing Steve Walsh: the guy not only has a very similar voice but has also his emotional interpretation. Not a small feat for such an iconic and unique singer. He even plays the keyboards! The fact that the band decided to hire a second guitarist (Zak Rizvi, also a songwriter and producer) and keyboards player (David Manion) made the band sound stronger and closer to their classic line up.

Of course nothing of this would never had worked out without good new compositions. And the band delivered the good! The first three tracks were very good, but did not really move me, maybe because they were short ones. They were certainly strong enough to justify their inclusions but the "real" classic Kansas comes in full power from Rhythm In The Spirit onward. That song has all the right elements youd expect from the good old days: prog stuff with great guitar, violin and keys interplay. The rhythm section is also on top form and added to the powerful delivering of Platts voice it becomes one of those tracks that would sit comfortably along with any other of their 70s stuff. Better still, the following tunes were as good as this one! Sometimes in songs like the 8 minute+ The Voyage of Eight Eighteen youll feel like youre hearing something lifted direct from Leftoverture or Mask. The semi-acoustic Refugee is another highlight, but really, The Prelude Implicit is one of those CDs you want to listen to again and again, without skipping a single track. Everything here takes you back to their glory days without really copying themselves: the music is different, yet so familiar and refreshing you cannot help but loving every minute of it.

I would not go as far as another reviewer that says this CD is their best since Point... but I must say that its very hard to find anything after that one that has the same balance between tracks, that sounds as good as a whole. Certainly its Kansas best in decades.

If youre a fan of the band you can go no wrong with this album. Its a real resurrection of a great group. I only hope it wont take them so much time to bring us with such brilliant record. It was well worth the wait, though. Welcome back, my friends!

Rating: 4,5 stars. Highly recommended!

Tarcisio Moura | 4/5 |

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