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The Flower Kings - Retropolis CD (album) cover


The Flower Kings


Symphonic Prog

3.74 | 515 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars 3,5 stars really!

Though being pure retro prog (already emphasized by its title) this one is after Unfold The Future my second favorite by them I can say. But actually the fact that it sounds like been done in the 70's is not that much surprising because all the songs had been written during that time. Roine Stolt had the idea to record some old material with modern equipment and technique and I would say, that this was quite a brilliant idea and the result was a real excellent album.

The album starts after the short demonstration of the Rhythm Of Life by a ping-pong ball immediately with the best track, the instrumental title song, which is highly diverse in its melodies, rhythms and instruments been used. Roine Stolt and Tomas Bodin are giving their very best here on their instruments and the rhythm section with Michael Stolt and Jaime Salazar is excellent as well. Next highlight is the ballade There Is More To This World with great vocals by Hasse Fröberg and really captivating melodies. They are sounding on this one like an updated version of YES. Another great song is The Judas Kiss which offers quite a lot of contrast: floating melodies and pastoral keyboards versus grooving jazzy guitars. But as well all the rest of songs are really not worse than these ones, offering great melodies some funny sounds like oriental sax tunes, weird percussion, ethnic vocals or the creaking of a sailing ship in Rhythm of the sea.


There is in fact not any weak moment on this album, nevertheless considering its date of release I wouldn't call it an essential in prog necessarily. It would have been for sure if released about 30 years earlier. But without any doubt Retropolis can be highly recommended to any symphonic and retro prog fan. People exclusively looking for innovations might be disappointed by it though.

(Edited 7/27/2006)

hdfisch | 3/5 |


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