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Jadis - Once Upon A Time CD (album) cover





3.39 | 15 ratings

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Symphonic Team
3 stars High IQ?

Though released in 1993, one year after the band's debut album, this three track EP features songs that are (if I'm correctly informed) older than those that made it onto More Then Meets The Eye. Even if they didn't release anything officially until 1992, Jadis had been around in one form or other since the mid 80's. Apparently they reached moderate fame while touring in support of bands like Marillion and IQ. Marillion's Steve Rothery produced some of their early demos from which some of these songs originated and two members of Jadis were also members of IQ; namely, Martin Orford on keyboards and Jon Jowitt on bass. The rest of the band are Gary Chandler on guitars, and Stephen Christey on drums.

Though sharing members with IQ and being associated with Marillion, the music of Jadis is very different from that of those bands. Jadis focus on a guitar-based and rather instrumental sound. There are indeed vocals on these songs, but they are rather anonymous and it often feels as if you are listening to an instrumental album as the focus lies mostly on the guitars with the rest of the band being relegated to the background much of the time. The guitar playing of Chandler is similar to that of Steve Hackett, but very far from being as distinctive and unique as the Genesis guitarist. The music of Jadis is very pleasant and wholly enjoyable and they are indeed a very competent band. However, the sound is rather polite, never aggressive and not very complex and overall it comes across as anonymous and not special. So, though good, I fail to gather up much enthusiasm over this music.

The three songs featured here are every bit as good if not better as the best songs from More Than Meets The Eye and this EP is as well recorded and produced as that album. Maybe it is too perfect to be interesting? The first two tracks Follow Me To Salzburg and All In One Day flow into each other, while the third track, View From Above, stands on its own. The latter is the same type of song as IQ's It All Stops Here which means more complex and up tempo.

Once Upon A Time is a recommended companion to More Than Meets The Eye, but hardly essential listening unless you want everything IQ related.

SouthSideoftheSky | 3/5 |


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