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Yesterdays - Senki Madara CD (album) cover

SENKI MADARA

Yesterdays

 

Symphonic Prog

3.94 | 65 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Chamber101
4 stars After listening to their latest album lots of times, I had to revisit their 3rd album and got inspired to write a review about that album first. Senki madara was the 3rd album of Yesterdays, no thanks to financial and bureaucratic reasons they've released it on CDr. Fortunately the quality of the music, the sound, the production and the beautiful black vinyl record style disc and the matching booklet lets me skip this minor flaw.

I can deeply understand the hype around this release. This idea to turn back in time and "use" traditional/ancient Hungarian folk songs and building symphonic rock around them is simply fantastic. Hungarians had genius composers like Béla Bartók and Kodály Zoltán, who took their time walking from village to village collecting the rich heritage of traditional songs, saving them for the future, and they even took inspiration for their own works from these beautiful songs. Fast forward 100 years came Yesterdays with the Senki madara album.

Senki madara - Nobody's Bird... lots of virtuoso flute melodies are telling the story in the language of birds. This album is not an uplifting, happy one, reflecting to the hard times of Hungarians, the deep levels of these songs are giving this album a dark, serious and more heavy aftertaste, which I like very much.

Everybody is talking about YES influences, but Yesterdays is so much more than a copy-cat band. It's very original... lots of percussion instruments, fretless bass, heavenly flutes and yes, there are mountains of Mellotrons and analog synthesizers.

I'd say Senki madara is a symphonic rock - folk and jazzy fusion record. The opening track is very strong and colorful, probably my favorite track on the album. It has everything you can ask for on a symphonic prog album.

Rejtesetek el starts with acoustic guitar and flute, later bass guitar, cello and moog will set up for the JON ANDERSON-like la-la-la vocal part. Chamber music reminiscent of AFTER CRYING... a string quartet enters and duels with the flute. Such a great build-up, instant goosebumps moments when the hammond organ starts screaming in the background.

Szivárvány havasán is the only happy song on the CD, it's the most YES-like tune with WAKEMAN-esque synth melody, beautiful acoustic guitars and great-great vocal extravaganza. A true ear-worm.

Elmehetsz has all the symphonic prog beauty in it, this was the first single from the album with a very artistic music video. The steel guitar solo quotes Soon from the GATES OF DELIRIUM. And there are other little YES quotes hidden in the other songs showing their true influences. It's so obvious they love YES and also EAST.

Ne mondd el is the darkest song with the darkest lyrics sung by guest lead singer Szirtes Edina (from SOLARIS' latest live line-up). Haunting percussion, a drum solo and distorted fretless bass.

Hajnalcsillag sums up a few songs from the album by using three 4 voiced choirs singing in the same time different songs in a BIG harmony in the end, that's 12 voices on who knows how many choir members.

Szomjú madarak brings back that good old Hungarian flavored symphonic prog we know from EAST's first two albums (Játékok, Hűség). Fretless bass, flowing Minimoog solos all over and there's a powerful guitar solo in the vein of TREVOR RABIN near the end of the song. JETHRO TULL style flute playing. Lovely tune with a dreamy acoustic coda freaturing soprano guitar (octave guitar with e-bow).

Eső (Rain) is the shortest, yet most beautiful symphonic prog tune I've ever heard. It brought back TREVOR RABIN's Jacaranda album to mind with the slide resonator guitar sounds, but the synth solo is out of this world, so is Stéphanie Semeniuc's vocal performance.

Nap (Sun) is based on a children's song that they sing to invite the Sun back to the sky on a rainy day. And this song truly brings the sunlight back. So much energy in this one. So many colliding well thought out musical parts that are leading to a brutal/heavy ending... a distorted bass guitar solo with drums playing crazy time-signatures accompanied by swirling analog synths and choir mellotrons.

Úgy bocsáss el (Let me go like that) had to be on the album. This was a signature Yesterdays move, calming down the listener, saying goodbye with an acoustic tune. Acoustic guitar, beautiful flute and a string quartet... each verse is transposed a half step down. Genius compositional move. Chamber music á la AFTER CRYING from their first albums Overground Music.

Senki madara is an album worth all the hype and it's really an "Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection" with its 4 stars. I have only one suggestion for the band: a properly pressed reissue like their latest album or a vinyl with some bonus tracks. Highly recommended!

Chamber101 | 4/5 |

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