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Ken's Novel - The Guide CD (album) cover


Ken's Novel



3.20 | 23 ratings

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Life Line Project
5 stars One of the true masterpieces of the Belgian progressive rock scene.

One of the most underestimated albums of the progressive rock scene, "The GUIDE" shows all the brilliance of this alas so little known Belgian band KEN'S NOVEL from the Walloon town of Verviers, which already brought forth great bands like NOW.

Everything on "The Guide" is perfectly chosen and carefully planned. The playing of all musicians is impeccable and the album keeps you captured right from the start to the very last bar of this progressive rock epic about the hero Ken. The too abrupt ending keeps you unsatisfied, because you still want more.

The band have a very characteristic sound of their own, showing nonetheless all ingredients required for a true progrock band, mixing it at some spots to some ethnic and electronic elements. The vocal qualities of lead singer and main man from the project, Patrick Muermans are unequalled. His fairly high pitched singing is ear catching and very rhythmic. The harmony vocal arrangements are all extremely well executed and all give an excellent interpretation of the story line. "Homeland" is a very fine example of these well-planned vocals. Only the more quiet passages show a bit a French accent.

All participating musicians supply the story with a more than perfect accompaniment and the instrumental passages highlight the musical qualities of all individual members. The music is interwoven to a perfect unity. Electronic programmed parts are flawless combined to solid drumming and both powerful and swinging bass playing. All guitar solos played by Eric Vanderbemden are melodically very strong. To me, an inveterate keyboard player, the programmed keyboard parts are never disturbing. The sounds are well chosen and add the last details to the instrumental arrangements.

"Power and Dignity", one of the most catching songs on the album starts of with some well-chosen ethnic interventions and shows again the band fusing other more rhythmic styles to progressive rock music. They certainly know to bring new elements to progrock.

Another good example is "Rumour of War" almost making me think of Frankie Goes To Hollywood, which also brings some well succeeded revamping to the so often conservative progressive rock scene.

If you take the time to truly discover this album, you will get to appreciate the music more and more. I think "The Guide" can easily compete with the best IQ. The playing and singing is certainly more convincing and technically of a higher level.

I can advise everyone who is not afraid to discover something different, to try some of the music of Ken's Novel. Starting "The Guide" would be a wise choice because I think it's their best succeeded and most complete effort.

It would be madness to award this album with less than five stars, so her they are: 5 stars !

Erik de Beer

Life Line Project | 5/5 |


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