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Magus / The Winter Tree - Traveller CD (album) cover

TRAVELLER

Magus / The Winter Tree

Neo-Prog


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Greger
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars A really exciting band lead by multi-instrumentalist Andrew Robinson, who also have produced, composed and arranged the whole album, except "Into the Unknown" which is co-written with Debbie Moore. The best tracks are "Traveller", "Nostradamus" and "Until the Sun Burns Out". This is high quality electronic symphonic rock with reminiscences to CROSS, ELEGANT SIMPLICITY and PORCUPINE TREE. If you like the aforementioned bands I suggest that you get hold of a copy of this one.
Report this review (#4627)
Posted Saturday, February 28, 2004 | Review Permalink
apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Andrew Robinson formed a live line-up for Magus with Debbie Moore on keyboards and Jeff Costello on drums and after three gigs he begun writing material for a sophomore release.During the process both Costello and Moore left Robinson alone and he completed the recordings with the album's engineer Bryce Chicoine.When the album was completed Andrew signed with the progressive label InEarVisions and released ''Traveller'' in 1997.

The album opens with the melodic ''You Know The Way'', very much in a PENDRAGON/TWELFTH NIGHT vein, featuring good vocals and catchy grooves, but this Neo Prog approach was just the exception.The rest of the album sees Robinson exploring again the Space Rock territory with Electronic touches here and there, like on the eponymous track with its steady guitar rhythm and the use of sound effects.''Into The Unknown'' and ''108 Steps to Babaji'' are fully FLOYDIAN with hypnotic guitars and background synthesizers creating dreamy soundscapes.The long ''Until the Sun Burns Out'' is another example of Robinson's musical preferences, that unfortunately comes as a total failure.Space/Electronic Rock in the vein of SHAMALL with a stable groove, distorted vocals and atmospheric synths, which suddenly ends in the 6 minute mark, followed by a 7 minute narration (!!!) only supported by cosmic electronics.The even longer epic ''Riff'' has its moments, but it is way overstreched to be appreciated as a succesful composition.The opening minutes are definitely in the vein of PORCUPINE TREE with interesting heavy guitars, soon to be replaced by a long part with acoustic guitars and electronics.By the middle the interesting guitar work of Robinson returns in Heavy/Psychedelic/Space Rock mood with a nice combination between flashy synths, cosmic electronics and hard guitars.This groove will eventually soften along the way before its grandiose return at the end.

A slight improvement over the boring self-titled debut with some cool parts, but again Robinson's difficulties during the recording of the album are obvious.The music is often monotonous and uninspired and the sound effects are used more than they should be.Strictly for fans of FONYA, SHAMALL, PINK FLOYD or PORCUPINE TREE...2.5 stars.

Report this review (#827530)
Posted Monday, September 24, 2012 | Review Permalink

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