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Aethellis - Aethellis CD (album) cover





3.35 | 26 ratings

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2 stars Aethellis started as a one-man project during the millenium by American keyboardist Ellsworth Hall.Hall has been a huge prog lover since his youth and was also a member of a few prog projects back in the 80's and 90's.The lack of progress regarding the recordings of an album with his last band forced Hall to come up with the Aethellis project, while some of the material he recorded for this solo effort dates back in the 80's.The seld-released CD ''Aethellis'' came out in 2003.

Hall handles all instruments and vocal lines in this album and, as with many one-man projects, some of his music parts are nice, while others lack the professionalism of a normal band.His overall style falls into the accesible keyboard-based prog category with an undoubtful 80's feeling throughout and strong AOR hints here and there.The compositions range from symphonic passages and Neo-Prog tastes to Melodic Rock and cliche AOR ballads.Hall's keyboard work is the one that shines through this release.Fast piano paces and fine interludes, good synth passages and some decent solos are likely to please fans of keyboard/piano-driven musicianship.The few organ appearances have also a strong WAKEMAN-ish flavor and most of the melodies are listenable.On the other hand this album suffers from a number of flaws.The songwriting is decent but not great, some of the synth parts sound really cheap, the guitars are hardly recognizable, while the biggest problem seems to be the over-plastic drum machines.Even Hall's voice does not set a candidacy for the best singer around, still it suits well enough with the music.

If Hall had managed to set a regular band and record this album in a professional basis it would have sounded a lot better, no question.For the time being ''Aethellis'' seems a work strictly created for fans of Neo Prog or 80-sounding synth Art Rock and this is the audience I would recommend to check out this effort...2.5 stars.

apps79 | 2/5 |


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