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Sylvan - Sceneries CD (album) cover





3.94 | 426 ratings

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4 stars The amazing things a piano and voice can accomplish--especially when assisted by the orchestra-like contributions of an electrified band like Sylvan has. (Musing rhapsodically: I wonder what this album would sound like stripped down to ONLY piano and voice?!)

1. "Chapter 1: 'The Fountain of Glow'" (14:50) opening with piano and voice, the first movement of the song explores the delicate, almost symphonic side of Sylvan. Awesome guitar solo in the third and fourth minutes! Weird stylistic shift at 4:00. (Get used to it!) A song that really puts on FULL display the versatility and skills of the band members (and that voice!) Another stunning guitar solo in the ninth minute leads to another shift, this one much more smooth and engaging. Probably the best song on the album despite containing the weakest crescendo movement near the end. (28/30)

2. "Chapter 2: 'Share the World with Me'" (15:05) every minute is filled with something new and exciting that you don't want to miss--and all leading to an amazing finish. (27.25/30)

3. "Chapter 3: 'The Words You Hide'" (20:10) The heavy side of Sylvan! Glorious! Odd shift at 6:50 into upbeat acoustic guitar passage. I'm happy when they get back to brooding at 10:42 and 12:53. GORGEOUS and emotional final section (final three minutes). Had they left out that weird section from 6:50 to 10:42 this would be one of my all-time favorite Sylvan songs. (37/40)

4. "Chapter 4: 'The Waters I Traveled'" (20:00)A perfect display of Sylvan, flawless Sylvan, in all of its flowing, connected Heavy and Symphonic Prog glory. Great song start to finish (especially the first 15 minutes). (36/40)

5. "Chapter 5: 'Farewell to Old Friends'" (20:33) appropriate to open a storytelling with an acoustic guitar strumming away. It goes dark and ominous by the second minute--but then another odd mood/stylistic shift at 5:30--and another at 7:00. So many (too many) styles for my little brain! The second half of the song is much more to my liking as it gets heavy and emotional and stays so for a long time--till its end. Weird, disjointed first half, GREAT second half. (35/40)

Total Time 90:38

A-/Five stars; a minor masterpiece of progressive rock and a superb contribution to the Neo Prog lexicon.

Blessed with amazing sound production, great lyrics with music matching the emotions being expressed, and Progressive Rock music's premier male vocalist, and you have one heck of a gift of music to immerse yourself into. My suggestion: Put on the 'phones, kick back in your most comfy Lazy-Boy, and let go of a couple hours. You won't regret it.

BrufordFreak | 4/5 |


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