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Looking-Glass Lantern - Candlelight And Empire CD (album) cover

CANDLELIGHT AND EMPIRE

Looking-Glass Lantern

 

Neo-Prog

3.90 | 34 ratings

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Second Endeavour
5 stars Following up two prior, quite ambitious albums ('A Tapestry Of Tales' - 2013 & 'The Hound Of The Baskervilles' - 2014), LOOKING GLASS LANTERN return with a new offering 'Candlelight and Empire' which is another testament of classic progressive rock in a modern execution. To put my review into the right context, I wanna say that some closest musical cognates for LGL are such pillars of the genre as Genesis, Alan Parsons Project and Barclay James Harvest. There're many other reasons to be enthralled. This 'one person group' always offers their listeners lots of Sympho-tinged splendour, and the brand new CD is no exception. Four years back now, Graham Dunnington created the solo project to accomplish his own goals. Having the ability to play in a variety of different roles as the keyboardist, guitarist, drummer and bassist, Graham gives LGL a special depth - which majority of contemporary bands often lack. Sure, mister Dunnington is an incredibly gifted instrumentalist. He also possesses a heartfelt and recognizable voice, another trademark that helps to provide Looking Glass Lantern an extra stamp of quality. Well-written, composed, arranged, fully performed and produced by Graham Dunnington, CD 'Candlelight and Empire' is saturated with authentic progressive rock sound featuring the elegant compositions, melodical gusto, majestic soundscapes, divine keyboard textures, synth signatures, the polished guitar performance and dense rhythmic backbone. Certainly, the ethereal mode still prevails in material, yet this time around - together with a gorgeous suite 'An Evening Soirée' (30+ min. long) which stands out. There's a lot of detail and nuances to the songs that should reward repeat listens. Alongside the great music, you can hear the relevant lyrics with a special scenario. It's quite obvious, Graham Dunnington remains loyal to his source of historical inspiration, that seems really interesing. The new LGL record presents (once again) the storyline to contemplate a late XIX century's time to-the-point. Creating a slightly mysterious atmosphere of Victorian England is the important factor here. As far as the concept is concerned, descriptive lyrics are telling about one day in the life of typical middle-class family. There's a genuine feel of theatrics, a life-mirroring with emotional experiences. Involved songs are strived to maintain the general thread that should connect all pieces of this 'conceptual work'. The album grabs you from the initial theme 'The Maid', setting the scene. Overture-like chapter develops into a magnificent track 'The Girl Nobody Knows', which brings dazzling splashes of colour. The subtlety in build-up and plethora of hypnotising components are demonstrated on 'The Cook'. Afterwards, superlative 'The Governess and the Children' follows. (The utilized complementary instruments are Mellotron and accordion). It moves to the next song 'The Angel of the Home', drawing from the melodic and tying to the gentle piano. Supremely memorable piece with Hammond organ, 'The Husband' is much affected by classic Genesis style. Expanding the musical spectrum, the multi-layered epic 'An Evening Soirée' has embraced six parts ( 'A Shrine to Consumption', 'The March of Progress', 'A Civilised Nation', 'The Benefits of Empire', 'In Honour of St Cecilia', 'An Englishman's Home is his Empire', respectively). Being essential for the full story, 'The Maid' (reprise) sounds like a farewell to personages. Ultimately, when the last track finishes, you feel like you've listened to something wonderful, in the traditions of old-school progressive rock. In short, this release is delightful and if you have now a grave interest in Looking Glass Lantern, then you need to get it... RECOMMENDED!
Second Endeavour | 5/5 |

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