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Ageness - Showing Paces CD (album) cover




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2 stars Neo-Related Prog edging Hard-Rock most of the time with pretentious figure of the frontman who sings and plays flute (I bet he's wearing make-up during the live shows!). I must confess I'm on the edge of saying "what more can add about this album?" I can add that I'm happy of NOT buying it and I regret of bashing it - but it worth these 3 stars really. Sorry ,guys, but you're mediocre copycats with derivative approach. I didn't give it 1 star in order to preserve a shade of justice - there are some enjoyable melodies, but nothing more.Not recommended
Report this review (#107889)
Posted Thursday, January 18, 2007 | Review Permalink
3 stars Anyone can spot Genesis as their primary musical root. Ageness -- Genesis; even names sound similar, don't they? On one hand, the theatrics of Peter Gabriel's Genesis (though his terribly pretentious vocals may try to copy more early FISH than Gabriel), and on the other, the 'Proto-Neo' sound of post-Gabriel Genesis, especially Duke (1980).

Here and there are nice melodies and the playing is not bad at all, but something is missing - originality?! - and the album leaves an unsatisfied taste. Hardly any track hits its target perfectly. It's many years ago I listened to this album, so I can't talk about songs in deeper detail. But as a positive side, Ageness' later albums are clearly more mature than this. (These are words from my original review, I just removed some thoughts that were more or less false. Apparently it was written too many years after listening to the album!)

EDITED IN 2010: Ouch, how cruel have I been with this album. I judged them as mere copycats without originality, but now after returning to the albums of AGENESS this sounds pretty pleasant Neo-Prog effort. OK, the Genesis references are still very strong, but so what. Many tracks are very good really. Compared to the Imageness album, tracks are shorter and there is no long epic, but still this debut is pure Prog. Mostly keyboard-driven in Tony Banks -style, and also the bass sounds very much like Mike Rutherford's in the trio era of Genesis. Tommy Eriksson's vocals may irritate at first, so obviously he is influenced by Fish especially, but, well, it fits nicely in this Neo-Prog environment. All in all, one shouldn't judge them for their direct influences but just enjoy the music.

Report this review (#132529)
Posted Friday, August 10, 2007 | Review Permalink
4 stars I think this album when I got it in 1993, was a lifesaver for me. It introduced me this wonderful world of progressive rock and I listened and listened.

The singer has a very distinguish and remarkable voice, not so far from Gabriel, Lee or Fish, but it still has it's own character. The overall sound is very professional and clear, so it must have been recorded in a real good studio.

The playing is also very high standard, just listen to those ultraspeed guitar licks and fine interplay in the instrumentals Seven Down and Drastic Measures.

Marigold is a song with a touching melody and killer keyboard riff, if this song would have been made by a famous band, it would have been huge hit and still can if God exists. Skies of Evermore is another song with a great melody and melancholy. Then on the other end you can find songs like Darkness and the miniopera Misunderstanding After Mistake.

One song Revelation, has one verse made up using band names as lyrics. Subtle, but clever: "It Bites Marillion on the Twelfth Night of Rush. They all tried, but bitterly failed in replacing Genesis".

All this with tongue-in-cheek, of course :)

Report this review (#219240)
Posted Monday, June 1, 2009 | Review Permalink
5 stars I saw Ageness in 1992 doing a cover gig playing Rush and that night really turned me in to a proghead. Then I saw every gig they played in Helsinki that and the following year before I moved to another town and missed some good gigs later. I was probably one of the first buyers of this cd when it came out in 1992. I really thought they were the best band in the world and this was the best album.

Time has changed some of my strongest opinions, but the feel for me is still very strong and I love this cd very much. Do listen with an open mind and you'll be rewarded. There are excellent guitar and keyboard parts, songs are really good and I like the voice of the singer. It reminds me a little of older Genesis with Peter Gabriel and also some instrumental parts have same 70's feel that I love.

Highlights for me are the wonderfull Misunderstanding After Mistake with the haunting and moody Darkness.

Report this review (#220175)
Posted Sunday, June 7, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars Not many prog bands came out from Finland in the beginning of the nineties. Anyway here is suberb group which had to self produce their first('I) cd-album, recorded in 1992. In fact this band is not quite new. Under the name of Scarab they made their first eponymous album in1983. With their vocals ala Peter Gabriel, suberb guitar parts, Ageness seem here balance between later day's Genesis (general form) and the old one (rich instrumentation). I must say this was a pleasant surprise to found this album back then through a friend in Finland. After this album they have released three more which I shall certainly return in the future.
Report this review (#220447)
Posted Tuesday, June 9, 2009 | Review Permalink
2 stars If you are fed up with bands sounding like "Genesis", you should better avoid this album. It might hold all the elements which you may dislike.

You got it all here with the opening track: "New World Anthem" (???), features the Gabriel oriented vocals (no news here), there are different characters (like?) and the general mood is fully respectful of the great band we all love. Having said this, it is not a bad song at all.

On the contrary, "Broken Heart" holds little to speak in its favour: heavy and noisy. Like when they were three (starting from "Abacab" if you see what I mean). Press next (you can also do the same while reaching "Asylum 32" even if the closing guitar break deserves a mention).

Few tracks from this album deserves attention, most of them sound REALLY cliché. Almost all songs are shortly formatted (except a couple) and easy listening prog is the result. Don't expect any complex neo-prog ā la early "Marillion" because this quest is vain : "Misunderstanding?" will surely convince you.

The longest song from this release ("Darkness") started promisingly, but as soon as the vocals enter the stage, they ruin the whole. It never catches up, except again during the very good guitar finale.

The second longest (by one second) is more an ELP affair for while. Heavy and quite enjoyable keys to start, formidable electric guitar solo from Vesa Auvinen, pleasant rhythmic section and quite melodic keyboards. It is my fave track from this "Ageness" debut (their "Scarab" disc refers to a former version of this band). The fact that it is a pure instrumental is probably not alien to this feeling. The highlight (but there aren't many).

The weak "After All" seems to march on the path from "Slippermen" at times, but dramatically fails. It is not very rewarding to listen till the end of this long album. Over an hour of such a treat is quite hard, to tell you the truth. The worse is probably achieved when you reach "Revelation" (which includes the chorus of "I Know What I Like").

The last instrumental is decent as well but can't raise this album to the next level. Two stars for these "Showing Paces".

Report this review (#243040)
Posted Monday, October 5, 2009 | Review Permalink
2 stars The second Ageness album is really their debut album. The Scarab album was under the Scarab name.

Ageness is spelled Genesis backwards and that shows. Well, almost. Ageness approaches Genesis and Marillion from an hard rock angle. That and from AOR. Plenty of guitars and keyboards here. A vocalist that tries to imitate Peter Gabriel is also included. His imitation act fails though.

Ageness tries their best. But I cringe when they sings about Rush, Genesis and Marillion and then include a piece of Genesis music into one of their songs. Please, don't do it...... The rest of the album contains of pretty moody nordic symphonic prog. The quality is not that great though, even exluding the cringe worthy parts. Most of this album can send a speekfreak to sleep. It is that boring. Boring is not a good thing when you have forked out 3 x the packet of 12 x sleeping tablets on this album. Should had bought the sleeping tablets instead.

Competent, but boring.

2 stars

Report this review (#459178)
Posted Saturday, June 11, 2011 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The Scarab story ended sharply in the 80's after the release of the self-titled album,but vocalist/keyboardist Tommy Eriksson wasn't done yet.The high school teenager became a mature adult and revived his music ability in 1991, forming Ageness.The next year a vinyl 7'' single appeared entitled ''Misunderstanding After Mistake/Broken Heart" and this was the precursor of the upcoming Ageness debut.''Showing Paces'' finally came out as an indepedent release.

And what a great comeback this is by Eriksson and his new bandmates.''Showing paces'' is extremely clever Neo Prog with plenty of catchy tunes, memorable melodies, interesting instrumental parts and a heavy GENESIS atmosphere,though in its modern version.The overall style holds similarities with bands such as IQ, PALLAS and FINAL CONFLICT,that means Ageness switch from melodic vintage Symphonic Rock to powerful heavier Neo Prog with good riffs and bombastic atmospheres.Eriksson is the undoubtful leader of the effort, both with his flashy performance on synths and his GABRIEL-esque voice tone, supported by a second keyboard player named Jari Laasanen.The rest of the band supports in a fantastic way as well,with the great guitarist Vesa Auvinen filling the sound with nice riffs and melodic solos and the rhythm section being very solid.The way the band offers these GENESIS-inspired delightful retro tunes with the good use of even acoustic parts and then heads for some fiery rockier moments is simply outstanding and a great proof og Ageness' talent.Still the average production and some cheesy synths parts could have been treated some improvement.Notice also the smart auto-biographical ''Revelation'' song, composed by Eriksson and borrowing the GENESIS tune from ''I know what I like'', of how he came in touch with Progressive Rock with even references to Marillion,Twelfth Night and Rush.

An amazing comeback from the old Scarab leader and his new outfit.''Showing Paces'' is a must-have for any Neo Prog fan out there,but also a great addition for fans of Melodic Rock,Retro Prog and Symphonic Rock.This is propably how Genesis would have sounded if trying to carry their sound through the 80's.Highly recommended.

Report this review (#590055)
Posted Saturday, December 17, 2011 | Review Permalink

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