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The Flower Kings - Paradox Hotel CD (album) cover

PARADOX HOTEL

The Flower Kings

 

Symphonic Prog

3.72 | 473 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars THE FLOWER KINGS fourth double album is a concept album called "Paradox Hotel". The hotel really represents our lives, in that we check in(birth) stay for a while(life) then check out(die). We never see the hotel manager(God) but assume he's looking after the hotel so that it runs properly.The first thing to know about the band on this album is that Daniel Gildenlow has left along with drummer Zoltan Csorsz. As for the music it isn't nearly as complex or dark as "Adam & Eve", in fact this is very laid back for the most part with guitar, drums and bass often taking a back seat. Lots of mellotron, reserved vocals and harmonies on this one. I still really liked the first disc a lot, feeling it was a solid 4 stars, but the second disc brought the rating down for me even though my favourite song on the album "Life Will Kill You" is on it.

Some of the highlights for me were "Hit Me With A Hit" an uptempo tune with vocals and great bass lines early. It settles right down 2 1/2 minutes. I really like this section as drums, bass and mellotron create an awesome sound as angular guitar melodies play overtop. Full sound returns 2 minutes later. "Pioneers Of Aviation" is an instrumental that opens with guitar and pipe organ that builds. It turns spacey until the drums and aggressive guitar come in after 2 minutes. An incredible uptempo melody follows that has a slight Celtic(IONA) flavour to it. Pipe organ late. "Lucy Had A Dream" is mellow with reserved vocals to open. The lyrics are quite moving with some cool sounding guitar. It ends with this hilarious pretend add for an airline. "Bavarian Skies" is creepy in more ways than one, but it is truly brilliant. Haunting mellotron and piano provide the background to the spoken vocals. I like the female vocal melodies to end it. "Self-Consuming Fire" features intricate and beautiful acoustic guitar melodies. Reserved vocals come in and mellotron. Nice. The sound gets fuller 1 1/2 minutes until it's full after 2 minutes. Scorching guitar 3 minutes in. Fantastic tune. "Mommy Leave The Light On" opens with gentle guitar as vocals come in softly. Mellotron floats in. This is so heavenly. How emotional is this though. Gulp. The three tracks I didn't metion(not counting the brief intro song) are all good as well, making the first disc a 4.5 star rating.

The second disc(like the first one) opens with the longest song on their respective sides, and both don't do a lot for me even though I do like them. "Touch My Heaven" is ok, but the guitar solo is excellent and a highlight on the album. I do like the experimental side of "The Unorthodox Dancinglesson". "Life Will Kill You" opens with a spacey atmosphere before the guitar comes in sounding amazing. Vocal melodies join in as drums build. Guitar cranks out some great sounds. There is some ripping organ and killer guitar on this one. One of my favourite FLOWER KING songs of all time!

I really wish i could give this 4 stars because there are so many great tunes, but there are also many I can't get into on the second disc. If I could pick out the songs I like to make this a single disc it would be 4.5-5 stars. So yes, I do still recommend it to those who want to hear some great tunes. 3.5 stars.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |

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