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Kayak - Nostradamus - The Fate Of Man CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.98 | 83 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars At its time of release 'Nostradamus' was a bit of disappointment to me. Its predecessor 'Merlin - Bard of the Unseen' was one of my favorite albums and with this album Kayak just didn't continue in the vain of that magical medieval vibe. Coming back to 'Nostradamus' in later years helped me see the album has its own strengths and little weaknesses. On this record Kayak presents a double cd telling the life-story of the famous prophet, bordering on the vibe of a musical and a concept album. There's a strong cast of vocalists. Bert Heerink (Vandenberg), Edward Reekers (of the 'Phantom of the Night' era), Cindy Oudshoorn (who impressed so much on the 'Merlin' album), Rob Vunderink (guitar player and vocal secret Weapon), Monique van der Ster (Dutch theater vocalist) and Syb vd Ploeg (De Kast). Together the cast also forms a choir that adds to the orchestration of the album's best compositions.

Within the world of progressive rock Kayak has it unique tone of lighthearted melodic rock songwriting that can actually get quite dark (notably the song 'Dance of Death') and sophisticated - but never too abstract and technical. Ton Scherpenzeel is a wizard of chord progressions, whereas Pim Koopman's compositions often lead to melodic hardrock vibes. On this 2CD album the highlights are spread out over the material and the quality of the songs is quite consistent. There are songs that are clearly more progressive like 'Friends of the Stars', 'Dance of Death', 'If History was Mine Alone' and the 'Cruel Death/Tell me All/The Tournament/The Golden Cage' succession of songs. That doesn't take away from the fact that songs like 'Pagan's Paradise', 'The Inquisition' and 'The Flying Squadron' are fine memorable progressive poprock songs. Even the slightly weaker song 'Man with Remarkable Talents' and some of the cheesier ballads have their lyrical content to keep them interesting.

Liking this album well come down to your acceptance of the slightly 'musical' type feel of the album. It's quite an enjoyable and exciting ride and way more engaging then most story-telling albums I've heard. I suggest giving it some time to sink in when you find yourself out of new albums to explore.

friso | 4/5 |


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