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It Bites - The Tall Ships CD (album) cover


It Bites


Crossover Prog

3.87 | 200 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

5 stars As I've become huge fan of guitarist, vocalist and in my opinion one of the most talented todays musicians John Mitchell (of Arena, Kino, John Wetton band and many others), and his collaboration with founding It Bites keyboardist, great John Beck in successful prog-pop project Kino - from return of It Bites I expected a lot. Thanks to them I also started to listen to old It Bites, that really impressed me with their extreme originality and impressive musicianship in the difficult 80s - to me they've become one of greatest artists' surprises.

The Tall Ships is perfect blend of both bands. It carries on enough of spirit of original It Bites but brings us less ironical and satirical and more intimate, sophisticated and smooth approach (similar to Kino). As Beck said, Mitchell is only person for him who can replace Frank Dunnery (original member) brilliantly both on vocals and guitar.

Both Johns are back in full creativity, three years since Kino, their songwriting and skills have matured and progressed into ideal minds' cooperation. They also share also the bass lines, because of sudden departure of original bassist. Founding drummer Bob Dalton is present. It is pleasure to listen such truly intelligent music with real feeling, without shallowness or arrogance. No weak song, all of them could appeal on musicians for top-notch skills and great sound (though it's home-made recording). Many cuts may appeal for prog fanatics (complex rhythms, arrangements and dynamic shifts), but it is suitable for listeners of easy pop/rock for its immediate accessibility, riffing and pleasant production values. Despite album is easy to digest, every listening reveals something new and brings a lot of new feelings and experiences.

Notable is unbelievable Mitchell's raspy singing throughout and his breathtaking vocalization with Beck. Hard to pick the favourites, but while listening closer This is England I can only wonder how magical music can be. It is like a modern Bohemian Rhapsody. Such a spectrum of emotions, moods and shifts it brings us this fantastic piece of art. Perfect conclusion to a great album.

stewe | 5/5 |


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