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Billy Sherwood - Archived CD (album) cover


Billy Sherwood


Crossover Prog

3.10 | 12 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
3 stars Never enough

When I first saw this album announced, I got the mistaken idea that this was going to be a compilation album of some kind because the title seemed to indicate that it would feature archival material rather than new recordings. Thankfully, this impression was wrong and Archived is another proper, original studio album from the ever productive Billy Sherwood.

After his previous album, Citizen - which was filled with guest stars from Yes and other bands - Sherwood returns here to his long-established format of choice: a true solo album in the fullest sense of the term. Billy does everything himself: writing, composing, singing, playing all the instruments, mixing, recording, and producing, etc. Personally, I prefer this one-man approach over the all-star cast of Citizen and Archived does not disappoint. This album also surpasses 2014's somewhat uneven Divided By One, even if it is not up to par with Sherwood's best solo albums.

With Billy also having written and recorded material for a new Circa album (which will be released in July this year) and also a new album by World Trade, one may perhaps suspect that Archived contains the "leftovers" from those writing sessions. If true, these are some very tasty leftovers that only raises my already high exceptions for those forthcoming band albums even more. My expectations for the Circa album in particular are very high indeed. In contrast to the latter album - which is called Valley of the Windmill and is going to contain four lengthy songs - Archived contains shorter songs than we are used to from Billy's works. None of the 11 tracks exceed six minutes in length and the shortest (the title track) is just under three minutes.

In terms of style, anyone familiar with Billy's previous solo albums will know what to expect here. But while a casual listener may perhaps think that there is too much Billy Sherwood music in existence, for a fan like me it is never enough! This man is just so talented and inspired and he keeps pouring out high quality music at an impressive pace. Archived is no exception to this, and long may it continue! Now that he is back with Yes again, I hope that Sherwood's solo output will finally get more of the recognition it so very well deserves.

Archived is definitely a recommended addition to every comprehensive Billy Sherwood collection, but for beginners there are several other albums that are better place to start your investigation into his strong solo discography.

SouthSideoftheSky | 3/5 |


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