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Believe - Yesterday Is A Friend CD (album) cover





3.99 | 177 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
5 stars You've got to Believe

I love this album!

Polish band Believe follow up their acclaimed 2006 debut "Hope to see another day" with another fine neo-prog collection. The line up remains unchanged, with ex-College guitarist Mirek Gil developing the style of his former bands (including Satellite) while absorbing the influences of the other members' backgrounds. The album has a loose concept being based, in the bands words, on "love, happiness, freedom, truth, faith - the most important things in everyone's life". Virtually all the lyrics are provided by the band's lyricist Robert Sieradzki.

Right from the opening "Time" it is clear that the attention to detail here in terms of arrangement and performance is exemplary. There is an extraordinary precision to the playing yet the album manages to retain true warmth and emotion.

We turn towards a darker side with "Tumor", the violin of Satomi contributing to the remorseful atmosphere painted by the troubled lyrics. At 8 minutes, "What they want (is my life)" is the longest track on the album. The piece is founded on some astonishingly atmospheric violin, the harmonised vocals being reminiscent of the softer side of Porcupine Tree. Guest lead guitarist Winicjusz Chrost adds some striking colours to the louder core of the track.

While there is a welcome diversity to the tracks on the album, it simultaneously benefits from a defined continuity. The instrumental diversity of the band is exploited through the varied leads on the instrumental breaks. Apart from the aforementioned violin and guitar, "Mystery is closer" (for example) has some fine organ sounds.

Elsewhere, "Memories" paints a bleak picture of better times, Tomek Rozycki giving possibly his finest vocal performance. His quivering voice has echoes of Roger Chapman of Family, while retaining a much smoother, less confrontational mood. Indeed, the track reminds me in some ways of Family's "The weaver's answer". The lead guitar work of Mirek Gil is the highlight instrumentally here.

When it comes to "Unfaithful", be warned that the track includes telephone ring tone noises. I sheepishly admit that I found myself answering a non-existent phone call! The closing "Together" is rather different to the rest of the album. This brief acoustic coda is lighter than its predecessors, and instantly accessible.

In all, "Yesterday is a friend" is a highly accomplished work. Believe have succeed in blending together strong melodies, diverse arrangements, and top-tier musicianship resulting in a supremely atmospheric and highly enjoyable album. As with the work of other top class neo prog and symphonic prog bands, the album only truly reveals itself after a number of listens. That said though, the initial impact of "Yesterday is a friend" is still one of unfettered delight. Highly recommended.

Easy Livin | 5/5 |


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