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Jade Warrior - Horizen CD (album) cover

HORIZEN

Jade Warrior

 

Psychedelic/Space Rock

2.81 | 31 ratings

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kenethlevine
Special Collaborator
Prog-Folk Team
3 stars According to original member and vocalist Glyn Havard, who was unceremoniously written out of the group when they signed to Island Records as an all instrumental band, the group named itself JADE WARRIOR to reflect their yin and yang, their predilection for juxtaposing heavy and soft interludes, sometimes abruptly. They certainly lived up to this name throughout their Vertigo years, and even during the mellower albums that followed. Of course, all along we wondered what the group JADE would sound like, stripped of the WARRIOR. Wait, we didn't? Well, regardless, that question was at least in part answered by 1984's "Horizen", which is largely a Tony Duhig solo album with invited guests. Even Jon Field himself is only on several tracks.

This is a uniformly smooth and mellow album, but, all things considered it could have been a lot worse. Yes the whole production is coated in a lustrous sheen that befits the ascendancy of the New Age era which JADE WARRIOR pioneered, but the compositions are actually reasonably thought out and executed. The album opens with its most triumphant and lucid piece, the "Dune" suite which was ostensibly an ultimately unsuccessful candidate for soundtrack to the movie of the same name, based on the work of science fiction writer Frank Herbert. That doesn't diminish the brilliance of the piece. This is followed with the only major contrast on the album, the steel-drum led "Caribbean Wave", which is certainly one of their more vivacious pieces, and wholly successful.

While the remainder is a notch or two below the opening numbers, "East Wind" and the closing "Long Wait at Mount Li" do offer modest challenges, including a choir on the finale. Overall, this is a rather successful attempt to integrate the classics of the Island era into a more chill 1980s format that still promotes mindfulness. 3.5 stars rounded down.

kenethlevine | 3/5 |

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