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Daal - Dodecahedron CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

4.07 | 276 ratings

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5 stars "Diverse" and "cinematic" are a couple of the words from other reviewers that I will definitely use in my own review of Dodecahedron. Also, "eclectic" in the truest sense of the word. The variety and diversity of sounds, styles, and instruments chosen to create this album are simply astounding. Here are my impressions of the album's song's similarities and familiarities.

I (7:46)--ANEKDOTEN imbued with a little PRESENT (9/10)

II (5:10)--KING CRIMSON's In the Court of the Crimson King blended with PURE REASON REVOLUTION's The Dark Third. (9/10)

III (6:57)--"21st Century Schizoid Man" blended with Beethoven's 9th and THE BEATLES' "She's so Heavy" and then MIKE OLDFIELD's Hergest Ridge/Tubular Bells for the final minute and a half. (8/10)

IV (5:50)--feels like a more chamber rock continuation of the previous song--as if PRESENT or ARANIS had taken on the themes and melodies of the previous song. A bit too repetitive and drawn out, IMO, though the use of all acoustic instrumentation is quite fascinating. (8/10)

V (4:37)--is like a song that fell to the cutting room floor during the making of JAN GARBAREK, ZAKIR HUSSEIN, and JOHN McLAUGHLIN's 1986 "Making Music." (6/10)

VI (8:13)--starts out feeling as if it comes from PETER GABRIEL"s Last Temptation of Christ soundtrack but then evolves into something more akin to early AMON DÜÜL or ASH RA TEMPEL. The final three minutes move more into the territory of Force Majeure-era TANGERINE DREAM (with GEORGE HARRISON playing lead guitar). (8/10)

VII (3:02)--opens with a BUDDHA LOUNGE-like sound and feel. The airy flutes and zitherish instrument are soothing and mesmerizing--like a song by GOBI. A pretty song with a rather obscure/unsettling ending. (8/10)

VIII (4:32)--starts out like a piece from TANGERINE DREAM's 1977 live album "Encore." AT 2:40 there is a radical instrumentation shift, especially in the funk-stylings of the bass play, that take it out of the TD 70s music genre--or rather, combine it with some other group like THE DREAM ACADEMY. (8/10)

IX (5:51)--incorporates some incredibly familiar instrument and sound combinations--straight out of RUSH's classic work. At the one minute mark it softens into more of an ANEKDOTEN moment before rushing back into the "Limelight/Moving Pictures" riffs and sounds. I like the addition of the violin for the solo in the fifth minute. The synth strings' chord progression with whispering voices in the background gives it an eerie ending. (9/10)

X (5:11)--sounds of birds and waves are joined by treated piano, fretless bass, brushed drums and sax on this beauty. Sax plays the seductive melody over the piano's haunting liltings in the background. If this isn't a cinematic classic, then I don't know one. Much better, IMHO, than those delivered by LEBOWSKI on 2010's Cinematic. Perjhaps a bit simple at first listen, but hearing it over and over there is so much depth, so much to listen to on this song that brings forth layers of emotion and unresolved tension. Masterful simplicity. (10/10)

XI (5:14)--begins with a DEAD CAN DANCE feel to it: oddly treated percussives playing some kind of syncopated folk rhythms over which a bowed double bass keens its haunting melody. Random synth 'noises' are also interjected here and there to add to the deep-seated tension of this one. In the fourth minute everybody comes together into a cohesive structure--strings, synths and batterie. Ends with yet another odd, quiet ending. (10/10)

XII (8:15)--piano picks up a melody from the previous two songs and is joined by strings and zither. ARP synth solo takes over the melody from the two minute mark. All other instruments pulse together beneath. Brilliant! A few quiet instruments are allowed to "run free" between the synth and the staccato rhythm being played beneath. Reprise of the RUSH sounds/riffs. FRIPP guitar soloing. This song seems to be trying to gather all of the themes and sounds into one Overture. Very nice.

I love the eclectic gathering of familiar and loved sounds that DAAL have used here to put together a collection of 12 mini-'soundtracks' to some Gothic stories. Great ideas, great execution, great sound, an album that I will go back to over and over. I must say that one lasting impression I have from this listening experience is that I don't think I've never heard the sounds of RUSH used so well. Definitely an excellent addition to any prog rock music collection, perhaps even a masterpiece.

4.5 stars rated up for its amazing eclecticism. Perhaps even album of the year 2012.

BrufordFreak | 5/5 |


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