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Thirteen Of Everything - Our Own Sad Fate CD (album) cover


Thirteen Of Everything


Symphonic Prog

3.11 | 9 ratings

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3 stars "Thirteen of Everything" is a Symphonic Prog band originally founded in Texas, who released their first album in 2005. It has taken 14 years to release their 2nd album, "Our Own Sad Fate", released in June of 2019. The line up of musicians is consists of the same 4 musicians that recorded their debut album; Mick Peters on vocals, Chapman stick, bass, pedals, guitars and percussion; Ted Thomas on vocals, drums, percussion and sythnesizer; Joe Funk on guitars and synthesizer; and Thad Miller on synthesizer. However, Thad only appears on one track. Bruce McIntosh has replaced Thad as a core memter and plays piano, organ and synthesizer. Other musicians that help out on some of the tracks are Brett Crosby on guitars, Rick Clark on vocals and Mark McMillan on violin. The album consists of 7 tracks and has a run time of over 51 minutes.

There are obvious influences in their music, namely Camel, King Crimson, Genesis and Gentle Giant. In fact, the idea for the band initially started after two of the founders got to talking after jointly attending a "ProjeKcts" concert. That is when Mick decided he wanted to learn how to play the stick. However, keyboard lines and percussion/drum patterns definitely will bring to mind several progressive bands from the 70s, plus the additionof Melltron and harpsichord. The band also brings in influences of their own state with hints of folk throughout.

"Dark Energy" brings in an interesting synth riff and then the addition of piano and drums, and later the guitar joins in with its own contrasting riff. Vocals start before the 2 minute mark. The music is bright and upbeat despite the title. After the first verse, there is a tinkling of cymbals and then the guitar comes in with a new riff and an instrumental section builds off of that adding in keyboards and then the guitar later. At 5 minutes, the sound mellows out to a soft mellotron and guitar section before the original vocal theme comes back in with the full band again. "Storm Season" is an instrumental that begins with a pensive piano solo. It's not until just before the 3 minute mark that the full band kicks in as the piano continues an arpeggio pattern and the drums and guitar play a progressive passage with each other. Things eventually follow into a more steady feel, but the progressive start/stop sound contrasts with the simple piano beginning. It's all pretty good though.

"Event Horizon" is another instrumental track, this one exceeding 8 minutes. It starts with a piano and distant guitar. A violin comes in after a minute. The distant guitar starts again as things meander around without drums. When they do come in, it is a lilting, almost folkish style. At 3 minutes, it goes in a different direction as the guitar and drums work together to establish a moderate beat with progressive stylings. Instead of developing into something however, it ends with a choral synth effect, then the piano brings in various voices speaking incoherently, the piano slowly builds and the guitar and drums and piano finally establish a steady beat as synths provide a nice solo, but this doesn't really come together until just before 6 minutes. A nice guitar solo finally develops, but it has taken a long time to get to this point, and the journey there seemed a bit unfocused and arbitrary.

"Walk on Water" is over nine minutes and starts with a soft guitar and falsetto vocals, and then a slower ballad-like rhythm starts up. This strangely enough, sounds like a very early "Scorpions" track (from around the "In Trance" album) to me at first. After two minutes, it gets minimal with just the voice and synths. This atmospheric and minimal section continues on for quite some time and drums don't come back in until the 5 minute mark, and then there is a quick build up. There is something about the vocals that bother me, the melody doesn't exactly fit the passion or something. Also, the instruments just sort of meander around without really developing anything. "Life is Change" is the track that features the original keyboardist and most of the guests mentioned earlier. It make me think it might be an older song. It seems to be a bit more upbeat and more straightforward, but the vocals continue to be uninteresting along with the melody.

"West Texas" is another instrumental track. It starts with haunting effects and acoustic guitars. The sound is expansive like wide open spaces. Soon, sythns come in to back it all up and give it all a lonely feeling. It's all a nice depiction of the area it is named after, giving the listener a lovely soundscape of the open expanses. It never really develops much however, and the hope that you are going to get something more expressive like "Valley of the Gods" never really happens. If you are looking for an effective soundscape of this sort, I would recommend that band. The last track is the 9 minute "Plague". It begins with just acoustic guitar and soft vocals. Drums finally come in and the vocals develop a bit more but when it slips into an instrumental interlude, it tries to sound progressive but comes across as being clumsy. After 4 minutes, it becomes more intense and the progressive sound returns with a lot of guitar, but it's a bit clunky.

The fact that there is a lot of variety in this album should work in its favor, but it doesn't. The album is all over the place and nothing really comes across as being authentic. Things that should work, don't. The music seems awkward and the vocals are not that great either. The band has some impressive influences, but this album just doesn't echo them very well. It seems they are trying to put a little bit of everything here, and they would have been better off focusing on being more concise. There is a lot of meandering going on throughout, like they are working up to something spectacular, and then it never happens. When they do let loose, it seems that everything is just off a bit, giving it all a harsh and clunky sound. The ideas are there, they just don't come to fruition very well. Anyway, there probably is enough good there to consider it a 3 star album, but I'm afraid it isn't a very strong 3 stars.

TCat | 3/5 |


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