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A.C.T - Silence CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

3.43 | 141 ratings

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3 stars From "relationship" to "global warming"

Beyond my conscious mind, I have been a fan of A.C.T, and I think I have reviewed all of their albums before this one at this site. For me, this band is very unique and in fact I have never heard the kind of music they play. In one of the reviews I mentioned it as a cabaret rock music - or something like that. Of course, my favorite was their "Last Epic" album which blew me away at first spin of the CD. The album has a tight composition and outstanding production. But when I got this "Silence" CD, I was a bit disappointed at first spin because I did not grab the "aha" at the first spin. Fortunately, it grew on me after couple of spins even though it's not as great as "Last Epic" album. "Silence" comprises short tracks (track 1 - 10) followed with multi-section epic (track 11 - 19).

Truth Is Pain (4:09) opens the album beautifully with a tightly composed opening part comprising ambient riffs followed with sudden break to accommodate the vocal to enters. In fact, the sudden break is excellent as it provides the listeners trigger a question "what's next?" after the break. When the vocal says "Once it was great, just be alive. Life was so simple, I was satisfied with myself" .. wow it represents great impact to my emotion and I feel bad with the music. It then flows beautifully with some combination of soft riffs, string section and rhythm section. The flow of the music is so wonderful, combined with great melody. The guitar solo in the middle is stunning but it has much more impact when the keyboard provides its solo after guitar. Great track! Full five stars! The lyrics are all about relationship.

Puppeteers (4:13)moves in such a way faster in terms of tempo compared to the opening track. The key to this track excellence is on its vocal choirs and weird rhythm section, augmented with operatic (cabaret like) singing style. Listening to this track is like imagining myself watching an opera with a story line. The melody line is also strong and this track is excellently positioned after "Truth is Pain".

This Wonderful World (4:20) is another great track as great as the opening track. It starts with accentuated and theatrical singing style emphasizing environmental issues - global warming which has polluted the sea. This track has a wonderful melody line augmented with excellent string section / orchestration. The multi-style nature of this track makes it so dynamic and really enjoyable listening. I like especially the positive phrases of lyrical part : "This wonderful world . Now you think I will tell you which way to go .", especially the melody line during this segment is so catchy. It's a great track.

Out Of Ideas (4:47) has a groovy nature combining bass guitar and acrobatic drumming, augmented by piano and guitar fills. When I first listened to this track for the first time, I obviously did not feel something special - but with more spins it has finally become a good variation in terms of song sequence. This song is really different from the first three songs. The chorus line is powerful : "Oh, nothing to say, how cruel. Who do you think you fool?". There is musical break which features jazzy guitar fills in slower tempo which makes this track looks rich in textures.

Hope (4:29) blasts the music off with so called heavy riffs ala progressive metal but with the intense style of A.C.T. When the vocal enters, the music changes significantly. The rhythm section while accompanying lead vocalist is performed by drums. The music flows with heavy riffs unique A.C.T. The chorus line also truly represents the ACT style. It's a nice track especially when it suddenly changes the music after the break with a work of keyboard followed beautifully with guitar solo. It's really an excellent composition!

Into The Unknown (3:55) is to me sounds like a pop song with keyboard-orientated rhythm section. During the singing portion, the guitar is played like guitar fills of Steve Hackett. As a pop song, I don't see the complexities or dynamics of its composition it just flows smoothly like any pop song.

No Longer Touching Ground (4:11) keeps the pace of its previous track in pop mode even though it has more upbeat than the predecessor. The opening part reminds me to the music of Mike and The Mechanics. I would say this track is just mundane, nothing special.

Useless Argument (4:49) is a Beatles-influenced song with frequent tempo changes from fast to suddenly into slow segments and returning back into fast one. The guitar work provides a combination of riffs, fills as well as solo.

The Voice Within (3:55) gives more space for bass guitar to provide tight bass lines from low until medium register notes. Keyboard provides good intertwined roles or support each other. Unfortunately, this track lacks melody line, nothing special. In fact, when I reach this track I feel getting bored with this album. Too bad, but that's what I feel.

Call In Dead (2:51) brins the music back into faster and upbeat tempo style and some choirs sound like Queen's. The rhythm section sometimes with heavy riffs but it also changes to reggae as well. Looking at the music flows, this is quite dynamic track actually and it's better than two previous tracks.

Consequences represents this album's epic that comprises 9 parts with each duration is relatively short (from 0.51 to 4:32). It starts beautifully with "Silent Screams" through slow keyboard work that reminds me to the melody of pop song by Air Supply "All out of Love" (?) (1:58) augmented beautifully with excellent violin work. The music suddenly burst into heavy rhythm with frequent tempo changes followed with "Introduction" which features nice singing line. It suddenly moves the "Tom Jones"(?) like music (hmm I think its something like "Delilah" song). Under "The Millionaire". The bass guitar provides nice entry to next excellent track "Joanna" which has good riffs and acrobatic keyboard as well as guitar work combined with orchestra. This is really ann excellent part because the music is really dynamic - especially during ending part where keyboard provides nice solo backed with heavy riffs. It continues seamlessly with excellent break under "A Father's Love" through melancholic vocal line - it's really nice, indeed! "Memory to Fight" brings the music into upbeat style followed with another melancholic break in "The Diary". "A Wound that Won't Heal" music style is like an encore even though this is not the end of track. The epic closes with "The Final Silence" with melody line that is similar with the opening part "Silent Screams" this time with howling guitar solo.


I know that I enjoy this album even though not all tracks are outstanding; those who are excellent are really excellent, but those mundane stuffs have in away jeopardized my overall rating about this album. The problem that I have with this album is the feeling of getting bored after listening to until track no.6 or 7. That's why, I conclude this review with an overall album as "very good". I enjoy it and I recommend you to have it as well. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Gatot | 3/5 |


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