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Wobbler - Rites At Dawn CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.98 | 491 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Eclectic Prog Team
4 stars I have begun my day with this album many mornings. The difference in comparison may be subtle, but I would say that on this album, Wobbler sounds a little less like Yes and more like Starcastle. I appreciated Wobbler's debut. Their second album was less impressive. This one is by leaps and bounds their best. Bookended by peaceful instrumentals, nearly every minute of this album is charming and stimulating.

"Ludic" A swirling, malleable introduction waxes and wanes.

"La Bealtaine" Granular guitar and stout bass burst into the first song. There's the first of several incredible and creative vocal refrains, and the band shows how well they've evolved vocally through the use of counterpoint. Mellotron soars through at one point, while the rest of the ensemble remain consistent. Just over halfway through, a second impressive vocal melody comes through alongside acoustic guitar. If that isn't enough, Wobbler dazzles with a third. I am amazed how this composition flows, because when I think back on this album, my mind separates these melodies into different songs, so each time I come back, I am astonished that they are parts of one stellar whole.

"In Orbit" The lengthiest piece begins peacefully before a jarring guitar and bass interaction occurs. It temporarily subsides, revealing peaceful, Gentle Giant-like melodies. The fourth wonderful melody happens over rapid instrumentation. The fifth arrives just before keyboard solos that are both playful and more menacing. The remainder of the piece is reminiscent of Relayer, particularly "To Be Over," and is nearly just as uplifting.

"This Past Presence" Acoustic guitar and elegant Mellotron and piano weave a dreamy atmosphere. A rattling guitar solo fires off over a dense rhythm in 6/8. The final passage is soaring and brilliant, with Mellotron in both strings and flute mode.

"A Faerie's Play" Cascading Mellotron and loose drumming help make up a beautiful piece of symphonic progressive rock. This is, I must say, despite its ingredients, the most forgettable song on the album. It is not at all a flaw, only the weakest comparatively speaking.

"The River" The band adopts a sound closer to classic Kansas here (sans violin and with Mellotron, of course). Midway through gives us yet another fascinating vocal melody backed up by an interesting harmony and quite like Starcastle all around. A bass interlude leads to an instrumental section that once again reminds me of Kansas before launching back into that wonderful theme.

"Lucid Dreams" The final piece is an airy mood similar to the beginning.

Epignosis | 4/5 |


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