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4 stars This band Edge were really a unique experience because they crossed so many progressive boundaries. Overall the musical content is eerily dark and so haunting in nature, especially as the vocals by Fran Hallard are seductive and emotionally charged, while the flute playing by Oliver Page serves notice that this instrument can find's it place in progressive music. Jez Ford and Neil Allies attack the songs in genuine gusto and the bass accompanying by Mark Hampton is also worth mentioning. The scope of the CD is a collection of spell enchanting scenes from some fantasy movie or film, the rich tapestry of the content is never dull and will always feel fresh when listened to. Comparisons are hard as the mid 80's were characteristised by many small groups in the UK appearing and disappearing after a short period, but EDGE's debut is a testament to good music. Peter Beaman
Report this review (#33283)
Posted Tuesday, February 22, 2005 | Review Permalink
4 stars Very interesting British progressive rock with a jazzy (but rocky) "edge". This band has nothing in common with the neo-prog movement back in the eighties. Female vocals by Fran Hallard are great as well as subtle flute playing. The music is quite raw and sometimes dark. The quality of the recording is not the best aspect of the album but who cares with music that good !
Report this review (#33284)
Posted Wednesday, May 11, 2005 | Review Permalink
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Mid-80's had to be maybe the worst period for progressive rock.UK, among a few other countries,kept producing some imaginative and decent music though.EDGE is one of this cases,a band that survived around mid- to late-80's and released two highly acclaimed albums.The first one entitled ''Suction 8'' was released in 1986 on MSI,a label with specialty on Neo Progressive Rock.

STYLE: While having obvious influences from the typical 80's British Prog sound,EDGE surrounded these sounds with heavy fusion doses with an even slight Canterbury touch.With a female singer (Frances Pearless aka Fran Hallard) on the front,the band delivers an energetic Neo/Symphonic style,often surprisingly paused by dynamic breaks with the flute player playing a permanent role.Frances sounds a lot like Tracy Hitchings,but her voice is more balanced and less theatrical.The guitar work ranges from melodic stuff to Crimson-esque riffs,often covered with flute sounds.Bass and drum work are very stable and consistent and have a sound closer to the typical 80's UK prog than any other instrument.Keyboard work is varied with plenty of inspired solos and haunting atmospheric passages.Definitely a very personal approach!

SOUNDS LIKE/INFLUENCES: Due to the female vocals,I would say imagine the most complex QUASAR/LANDMARQ parts blended with soft GENESIS,Canterbury-like flute playing and some mid-70's KING CRIMSON complexity.

PLUS: One of the most unique sounding albums ever!Superb female vocals,awesome and adventuruous interplays and one of the most rich-sounding albums of the period.Flute playing is among the best to be heard in the league.Keyboard work is also magnificent,producing a lot of changing themes.

MINUS: I guess this would have been even better if it wasn't of the familiar 80's sound production.More specific,some opening notes with keys and bass or a few guitar parts sound totally out of place.

WILL APPEAL TO: any serious music fan of this site,from the neo prog follower to the most demanding proghead.

CONCLUSION/RATING: It is prooved that 80's hadn't space only for Neo Prog music and EDGE are an excellent example.While having all these elements to be categorized as Neo Prog,this band kept the level of their musicianship even higher than some of the 70's big names.For anyone into intricate,challenging and original music,this is a must-have.4 solid stars!

Report this review (#297146)
Posted Thursday, September 2, 2010 | Review Permalink

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