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Aviary - Ambition CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.96 | 27 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars The title of its final track aptly sums up my conflicted answer to the question, "do you like this album?"

Aviary was a late 1970's progressive pop band whose music evokes images of classic Queen albums like "A Night at the Opera" and "A Day at the Races".

Don't let the release date fool you. These songs were recorded in the late 70's. They just weren't "released" until decades later. (Imitative? Sure. Retro? Not really.)

Two things helped this band avoid degenerating into a total clone of Queen. First, they wisely borrowed from other art pop-rockers just enough to fashion their own uniquely amalgamated timbre. Second, their music contained a few more prog-rock flourishes and overtones than Queen's.

Eva's Birthday is the highlight track for me. I wish they had explored this Zappa inspired style of progressive pop more fully. Of course, I'm sure Sony Records had more than a thing or two to say about such "abuses of studio time" back in the 1970's.

Truth be told, there is much to like here. The melodies are infectious and imminently hummable. The guitars are alternatingly harmonious and powerful. The overall vibe of the music is so unabashedly pompous that I simply can't resist smiling throughout much of this album.

On the other hand... the vocals can borderline on "fey" at times. (So don't say I didn't warn you). And of course, don' t expect anything truly visionary or totally original.

progpositivity | 3/5 |


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