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David Minasian - Random Acts Of Beauty CD (album) cover


David Minasian


Symphonic Prog

3.85 | 139 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

BankCo G Hackford
5 stars Easily one of the most beautiful CDs I've heard and I'm not just saying that because of its title. I've been a faithful reader of Prog Archives for years and was motivated to finally register and write a review after hearing this album. As a longtime Camel fan I was excited to hear something new from Andy Latimer after such a long absence. Andy plays guitar and sings on the first track Masquerade, and what a track it is. It begins with solo piano. Various instruments such as harpsichord, oboe, and cello are then added to the mix. Davids vocals take over and the track slowly begins to build. At the 4 minute mark Andy's trademark lead guitar enters along with drums and a powerful Squire-like bass. Andy's lead soars over a lush mellotron backdrop for the next 4 minutes, interrupted briefly by a moog solo. At the 8 minute mark the tempo dramatically changes and for the remainder of the song we have powerful twin guitars from Andy battling it out over Davids frantic piano. Andy's heartfelt vocals bring this stunning track to a close.

For the rest of the album, Davids son Justin takes over the guitar work. The middle section of Chambermaid features an extended instrumental break right out of the Genesis playbook with sustained Hackett-like guitars, swirling Banks-like keyboards, and bass pedals which will test the limits of your sound system. Storming the Castle begins like a Blackmore's Night track then suddenly morphs into heavy rock with blistering leads on moog and guitar. A very cool track.

Blue Rain provides the CD with its most gorgeous moments, highlighted by beautiful oboes, piano, harpsichord, and stunning Gilmour-like guitar leads. Frozen in Time is the most progressive track here. Made up of various sections, it flows from a keyboard-led fanfare to a pipe organ solo to a lute solo to heavy rock and back to fanfare during its 14 minutes. Summer's End to me sounds like the ultimate Barclay James Harvest track with its heart wrenching guitar leads over a lush background of mellotron, piano, and heavy bass. In fact, the whole album is drenched in mellotron and melancholy. Much of the music has a classical feel to it reminiscent of some of Jethro Tull's material (Velvet Green, etc.). And the melodies are some of the most memorable I've heard. David has a very good voice, however his soft vocals may be way too laid back for some. But this is not a vocal oriented album. 3 of the albums 7 tracks are instrumental including the longest track and those with vocals all feature long instrumental passages. To me, when the vocals and harmonies do appear, they blend in perfectly with the music.

This is a one-of-a-kind album that has been created with great care and excellent musicianship. I'll be anxious to see if David can actually top this. A definite 5 star masterpiece of symphonic prog.

BankCo G Hackford | 5/5 |


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