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The Enid - Final Noise  CD (album) cover


The Enid


Symphonic Prog

3.41 | 15 ratings

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3 stars This album is a collection of highlights from a couple of sold out shows that were recorded in the London Dominion Theatre. It was released in 1989 and was to be the final concert of the partnership between Robert Godfrey (originally from Barclay James Harvest) and Stephen Stewart. There is quite a variety of symphonic music here and most of it is instrumental with a lot of flourish, but there are some vocal passages on here, which have a dramatic feel to them, more like from a play than from an opera. The music itself is a rock/classical fusion, but the classical elements are from the Romantic era specifically, so it is very emotional and dynamic.

There are a mix of symphonic and rock instruments, but the music tends to lean heavily towards the symphonic side of things. That is where it is consistently different from most classical fusion music, typically the sound in symphonic prog leans toward the rock sound. As such, it is a nice original sound, but it is accessible and easy to listen to. At times, it tends to sound dated, especially when the synths are heavy. The music is beautiful and does venture into some heavier guitar sounds a few times, but, is mostly orchestral sounding.

I have hear a few live albums by The Enid, and both times I have the complaint that they are not mixed very well in the softer passages and it can be hard to pick out a melody or theme thus making the songs sound under-developed. From the sound of the audience, especially at the end of the album, the performance is quite satisfying and it makes one wish they could see the concert. I would imagine it is quite a show. The mix doesn't suffer quite as badly as it does on "Live at the Hammersmith" and so it is better on this album. But there still are places that you wish you could hear the sounds clearer.

There are some places where the music just takes too long to develop also, and the music just kind of meanders along like on "Sheets of Blue" and "Chaldean Crossing". But other tracks are quite well done and exciting like "Jerusalem", "Childe Roland" and "Something Wicked This Way Comes". The inconsistency of the tracks and the music weakens the album. I don't know if that is always an issue with The Enid or not since I have only heard a few of their albums, but knowing that there are some good tracks here makes me want to explore their music some more. It is rather hard to find it though, so when I run across an album like this one, I have to take what I can get. Until then, I have to average this one out to a 3 star because half of the tracks are great and half are not.

TCat | 3/5 |


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