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The Enid - In the Region Of The Summer Stars (1984) CD (album) cover


The Enid


Symphonic Prog

4.24 | 206 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars The Enid = the Bachs of Rock?

Probably not, but they may be the closest I have heard as of yet.

I have mixed feelings about this album. On one hand, I love this kind of music, and I certainly appreciate the guts it takes to make it, because there are a lot of ways for it to end up sounding cheesy or even incoherent. On the other hand, it seems that the Enid aren't sure which type of music they are going for: classically-inspired rock or classical music that rocks. I happen to think they are much more successful with the latter, most of which can be found on the second side of the album.

Side 1. These songs are more like singles, as in short impressions of a theme or idea. Aside from the soothing, Rachmaninoff-inspired Lovers, the other three songs could easily have been found on Hackett's Heirophant. There are plenty of good musical ideas here--and well-played too--but the songs don't really hang together well, as there seems a constant shift between relatively straight-forward rocking and more classical structures.

Side 2. This is where the Enid really shine and create something unique and majestic to my ears. The Sun includes a beautiful build-up to a tympani-slamming finale, with a wonderful lilting theme in between. This is just a teaser for final 15 minutes, which for me includes some of the very best classically-influenced music with rock instruments that I've heard. In addition, you can hear bits that refer to their influences, such as the 1812 Overture and Mars (great effect with the tympani!). If you're going to be inspired by something, it might as well be some of the best (or at least most popular)! I love the variety of instrumentation, guitar effects, and awesome, sweeping crescendos to be found throughout these pieces.

In short, the A side is largely 3-star material, and the B side is certainly 5-star stuff for me. That reasonably averages to a 4-start album. If you like instrumental, classically influenced rock--as I do--you can't do much better!

Flucktrot | 4/5 |


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