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Renaissance - Ashes Are Burning CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.22 | 693 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars 4 1/3 stars

This is Renaissance at their peak. The band mixes perfectly rock, classical music, folk, and a soprano female vocalist. The guitars are usually acoustic in this record, the piano is prominent as well as the amazing Annie Haslem's vocals. The drumming is usually simple, except for the title track with its excellent percussion. The Bass Guitar has a similar sound to Yes' bass.

"Can You Understand" begins with a classical piano solo that reminds me of 'Firth of Fifth', the rest of the song is a symphonic rock-folk with classical piano work. Brilliant!!. 'Let it Grow' is a piano folk ballad with nice melodies and a piano driven finale with wordless vocals.'On the Frontier' is a highly melodic and easy listening folk ballad in which a male vocalist sings along with Annie. There are two nice piano solos in this track. 'Carpet of the Sun' is a poppy and happy symphonic song with nice melodies. 'At The Harbour' is a dark track with brilliant musical arrangements and melodies.

The title track is a masterpiece and I am glad it is here in Progarchives so that people unfamiliar to the band can listen to this. It begins with a folk ballad with nice melodies. Later, Annie hits incredibly high notes with her voice and the song gets a bit heavier after Annie sings those wordless vocals. That next section is an instrumental workout in which all members can be allowed to shine (especially the keyboardist). After the short section in which Annie sings, Powell plays a highly melodic electric guitar that fits perfectly for the song.

This album is almost essential ... it is very melodic, it has the best female vocalist I have ever heard, good mixtures of genres, and pleasant easy music.

Highlights : Ashes are Burning

Let Downs : None

My Grade : B+

Zitro | 4/5 |


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