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Mindgames - MMX CD (album) cover

MMX

Mindgames

Neo-Prog


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b_olariu
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Third album of Mindgames from 2010, just released last month and named MMX. As previous reviewer observed, the MMX means in roman numer 2010. So, Mindgames needed again a long time to release another album, almost 4 years but the expectation are very positive. This belgium band hit the top of the prog genre with Actors in aplay, with MMX the band manage to keep it big in neo prog filed. Same great atmosphere on entire album, good compositions, and above all a pleasent and surprisingly positive attitude on all pieces. Again they did it , maybe a little less convinceing then previous one, but for sure a good album all the way. Again the pieces are elaborated full of catchy interplay between musicians, very solid musicianship. Every pieces is a winner again, not a bad moment here, they tried and succeded again to come with a valueble album in this genre. A recommended release for sure who needs 4 star easy. Great band who desearve a wider recognition by all prog listners. I'm not sure this is a better album then Actors in a play but for sure is a very well played composed album, and a good candidate to the the best of 2010.
Report this review (#268078)
Posted Thursday, February 25, 2010 | Review Permalink
Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Errors and Omissions Team
4 stars This Neo Prog album is Mindgames' new release, which is quite contradicting, because it literally means prefix that signifies "reborn", being in new age/era. Well, let's see this Neo-Prog release, shall we ?

As far as my poor, age tired ears can see (hehe), this is optimistic music. All 57 minutes long, I felt fine. It was like one great big cure to kill tired state of my mind and shine some sunlight into it. Well, from little bit more technical point of view, this music is quite various (they call it eclectic), graduating in most of the tracks, while along the way tossing some Prog elements, which results in very interesting experience. I hesitated, if I dare to give my best, but after all, sometimes you feel sure about something and so you do it. That's life, deeds and consequences.

4(+), if not the first then maybe one of few best ratings I've give this year (MMX). Because this music is audio (adieu?) poetry from good spectrum of them. Not so long, but not 39 minutes shortling, Mindgames are presenting fine piece of work that shouldn't be denied. Thanks guys from forum to reminding me that it's actually good album, so I was able to "get to" it.

Report this review (#269237)
Posted Tuesday, March 2, 2010 | Review Permalink
4 stars Having now listened to this album MMX and their previous album from 2006 'Actors in a Play', I am happy to say that MMX shows that Mindgames have made good progress between 2006 and 2010.

MMX, in my opinion, as a fan of symphonic and melodic progressive rock, is their strongest album to date. It starts off a little slowly, but by the third track 'Glory of the Night', it is beginning to pick up nicely. The final track 'The Pendulum' is an excellent 15 minute track and a fine closing song for the album.

If you are looking at buying this album (which I am trying to do at the moment!), you may have difficulty finding it for a reasonable price. Being a bit of an audiophile, I tend to buy CD's and then convert them to FLAC file format. I find it a little galling that even now, we don't have access to a generally accepted lossless audio format in the commercial mainstream. The cheapest I can find this CD for is from the Mindgames e-store for close to 19 euros, which is out of my price bracket. The most I will pay for a CD is £15 and for that price it better be good! If I can find it for £15 or less I will definitely buy it and I do recommend it as a very good addition to any progressive collection.

Report this review (#596416)
Posted Monday, December 26, 2011 | Review Permalink
3 stars 3,5 stars !!! After two exceptional albums "International Daylight" 2003 and "Actors in a Play" 2006 ( to this last I give 5 stars in my review #1010372 Posted Saturday, August 3, 2013) in which I've said "in comparison with "MMX" the "distance" grow in considerable way, because I don't find in "MMX" the same quality in arrangements and variations that I find in the two others" I want to stand out that I still think the same thing . However... after a more careful audition I must say which isn't a disdain, in fact MMX is much more simple album with a more "direct" sound, the arrangements are much more close of Heavy-prog. Listening in sequence "International Daylight", "Actors in a Play" and "MMX", I verify in this last the absence of the "filigrees" which you can find in two previous albums. But , "MMX" also have some attractives as for instance track2 "In my Humble Opinion" a great ballad , track 3 "Glory of Night" and his "addict" heavy part with drums broken beats (starting 3 min 54 seg), track 5 "Travels" ( one of best moments in whole album ) . Another great moment is track 4."Outside The Gloom" and the middle theme which reminds me GENESIS " A Trick of The Tail". In sume , if is not an album at the same level of their previous albums, also isn't a "disaster"! My rate is 3 stars !
Report this review (#1608571)
Posted Thursday, September 8, 2016 | Review Permalink
3 stars Belgian progrock formation Mindgames was rooted in 1997 but not until 2002 the band released their debut CD entitled International Daylight, in 2006 followed by the CD Actors In Play, in 2010 MMX and in 2015 Paradox Of Choice. Meanwhile the band went through several changes in the line-up, with Bart Schram (vocals and acoustic 12- string guitar) as the prime mover and constant factor. This review is about Mindgames their third album, during that time I witnessed the band on a Duch progrock festival. I was delighted about their music and bought this one.

The producer on this third album (and also their second effort) is electronic musician Frank Van Bogaert, he also produced other Belgian progrock band Neo-Prophet their stunning album Monsters. Listening to MMX. I am not surprised about that because there are strong similarities between Neo-Prophet and Mindgames on their new CD MMX: both bands blend symphonic rock, melodic rock and neo-prog with hints of Seventies Saga and Styx.

Most of the seven compositions deliver a song oriented approach with very tasteful work on guitar and keyboards, pleasant vocals and flowing shifting moods.

A dynamic and bombastic sound with lush keyboards an powerful guitar in The Source.

A beautiful build-up from dreamy with warm vocals and tender piano to a compelling final part with howling guitar and Mellotron choir sound in Glory Of Night.

From mellow with acoustic guitar and soaring keyboards to a slow rhythm with moving wah-wah guitar and Hammond organ in In My Humble Opinion.

Sensitive electric guitar, sensational synthesizer flights and in the end bombastic Hammond and a fiery guitar solo in the varied Travels.

From tender piano to powerful wah-wah guitar in the wonderful Outside The Gloom.

And exciting work on guitar and keyboards in the catchy Destination Sky.

We can listen to the band in its full splendor during the alternating and compelling epic final composition The Pendulum: after a spacey intro Mindgames presents an excellent balance of mellow, more dynamic and bombastic parts. From a tight rhythm with fiery guitar leads to a beautiful interlude with warm classical guitar and soaring keyboards, culminating in a strong conclusion featuring a very moving guitar solo with howling runs and majestic keyboards (Mellotron choir sound and Hammond organ), this is Prog Heaven!

If you are up to Seventies Saga and Styx, neo-prog in the vein of Clepsydra or recent progrock like Knight Area, this is a band to discover.

My rating: 3,5 star.

Report this review (#2036944)
Posted Thursday, September 20, 2018 | Review Permalink

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