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Roine Stolt - Wall Street Voodoo CD (album) cover

WALL STREET VOODOO

Roine Stolt

 

Symphonic Prog

3.57 | 140 ratings

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Gatot
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars When The Blues Meets The Flower Kings!

Mr. Stolt has pushed the envelope harder and beyond the musical territory he has been in thus far. He blends the power of prog rock and blues / southern-rock music into a composition where The Flower Kings / Roine Stolt fans would get a surprise listening to this album. Of course, the music still carries the soul of The Flower Kings music; but this time the influence of blues is so prevalent and we can hear it here and there. That's enough to justify that this is an excellent album no one should miss.

I got the CD couple of weeks ago. But, because at the time I was so busy organizing a flock of Dream Theater fans going to Singapore to watch The 20th Anniversary Concert, I did not play this album at my player. And after that I was busy with Uriah Heep concert in Jakarta last week. So I got the chance to spin the CD only couple of days ago. By the time I spun it I did NOT have any expectation at all with respect to the kind of music Mr. Stolt was about to play, I just let the CD produced whatever sounds and in fact I had not read any review or news about this album.

Disc One

To my surprise . it's a blues-based music combined with some Southern-rock style was flowing into my ears wonderfully. In fact I repeate the opening track "The Observer" (11:05) many times because I really enjoy the blues guitar Stolt plays. Awesome. I had never imagined that Stolt would play blues music on top of his music style with the Flower Kings. To me there is still a strong style of TFK music right here in this album. It's like listening to classic rock music with blues as foundation, combined with the soul of The Flower Kings. Wow!

"Head Above Water" (5:25) has more rock music in its composition and it refers to the classic rock music style especially on the way guitar is played. "Dirt" (8:15) has a wonderful bluesy opening using guitar work and keyboard followed with excellent vocals. "Everyone Wants To Rule The World" (4:05) - the title reminds me to the classic pop song by Tears for Fears. The opening part seems odd to me but the more I play this album it grows on me. At least, I like the uniqueness of singing style and its musical outcast. "Spirit Of The Rebel" (6:10) lends its style from Southern Rock music with some riffs that remind me to classic rock music like Black Sabbath or Led Zeppelin or in modern music by group like Audioslave. You might be surprised, again, that Stolt plays this kind of music. Enjoyable.

"Unforgiven" (3:00) is not the kind of style that favors me but it's good to have it here to give some variation of music this album offers. It's a straight forward rock music. "Dog With A Million Bones" (8:10) is another great blues rock with The Flower Kings music style. Oh .. it really reminds me to the glory days of classic rock music in the seventies but this time with new and modern sound. It continues brilliantly to another track with similar style but with more energy "Sex Kills" (7:20).

The last track of Disc One is really my favorite track. It's one of the best blues songs I have ever heard. "Outcast" (7:50) seems to me like Roine Stolt's tribute to BB King. It's not just the blues, actually - I like the music style combined with vocal character of Stolt, strengthened with stunning blues guitar solo. I keep repeating this track over and over. It probably has a very little load of "prog" but it's totally an enjoyable track.

Disc Two

"The Unwanted" (9:00) - it's a true wild exploration of Stolt's guitar work. It might lack cohesiveness in terms of structure and composition. However, I do enjoy this track very much especially how wild he explores guitar chords and notes augmented with Hammond organ punches and . dynamic drumming! Yeah man, the drumming part during his stunning guitar exploration is truly brilliant and becoming attraction point of this track. Am sure if you enjoy this track with an open mind you would find this is a rewarding track. "Remember" (6:55) was potentially not the kind of track I like. But, I can honestly admit that the interlude with guitar solo with unique percussion at the back is pretty to my ears. The southern rock style is presented here. "It's All About Money" (8:05) presents another style of music with mumbling and narrative style of singing style - a good combination of Neal Morse and Roine Stolt voices - augmented with keyboards and guitar. Lyrically, this is the place where Stolt mentioning clearly about the Wallstreet Voodoo. Some of the guitar work reminds me to Santana.

"Everybody Is Trying To Sell You Something" (6:55) continues the style of previous track. "Hotrod (The Atomic Wrestler)" (9:10) has a style of straight hard rock music with distorted guitar and consistent drum beats. This track lacks melody but it has good guitar solo. "Mercy" (2:40) is an acoustic guitar outfit with distant (and distorted) voice line. It's a nice guitar fills with bluesy style. Disc 2 (and therefore the whole album) concludes brilliantly with a blues intensive music especially on the way guitar is played in "People That Have The Power To Shape The Future" (11:05). The vocal line and the singing style have made this song very enjoyable. The chorus part which states "People That Have The Power To Shape The Future" is an interesting part and is very easy to emulate. Composition-wise it's not something you might expect that prog music would ever present. It's more on blues-rock composition with a very nice (and of course enjoyable) combination of guitar solo and keyboard / organ work which in some parts resemble jazz music. Oh man . I do enjoy this track very much - especially the long interlude part with stunning guitar solo. Bravo Stolt!

Nothing more I can say about this album than recommending you to have it. Roine Stolt is one of brilliant and talented musicians prog music has ever had. It's an excellent addition to any prog music collection. Keep on proggin' .!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Gatot | 4/5 |

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