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Amon Ra - Precarious Balance CD (album) cover


Amon Ra



3.50 | 16 ratings

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3 stars Amon Ra's roots can be traced around 1990 in Bamberg, Germany and the Uriah Heep/Deep Purple cover band "Friday the 13th".After the arrival of drummer Lothar Hermann in 1993 the band changed the sound into a more progressive direction, leading to the departure of singer Elmar Pfister.In a clever move the rest of the crew hired German-American vocalist Scott Balaban and a new era begun for the band.Finally in 1998 the long-awaited debut of the band ''Precarious Balance'' sees the light both as a private press and as a release on Treasure Records (though with different covers).

Amon Ra played an elaborate and passionate Progressive Rock in the vein of SAGA, MYSTERY and PALLAS with some nice melodies and great rhyhmic parts throughout.Anyone expecting a rather straightforward album should be informed that all tracks contain plenty of changing climates between smooth and heavier moments with an overall accesible feeling but also some really artistic orchestrations.The sound of Amon Ra is attractive and dynamic, characterized by a very good production and based on the extensive atmospheric synths of Dierk Neldner, his nice piano paces and the fantastic guitar work of Thomas Wenzel with both fascinating melodic and groovy passages.The tracks are mostly long with good arrangements and a nice balance between instrumental material and vocal deliveries.As expected the voice of Scott Balaban is far from accented, a great vocalist having a typical American voice with a high range.The style swirls arouns the Heavy/Neo Prog field with some decent symphonic leanings here and there and the more powerful and rich moments are among the highlights of the album.

The band played live with acts and artists such as John Wetton, Versus X and Saga, but these were followed by several line-up changes, the most important of which was the departure of original guitarist Thomas Wenzel.While the band seemed to be active as for 2005, nothing have been heard around them since then.

''Precarious Balance'' is an album of measured, well-crafted Heavy Prog with obvious Neo and Symphonic Prog leanings, highlighted by the great guitar work and the very nice arrangements.Strongly recommended...3.5 stars.

apps79 | 3/5 |


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