Monday, April 3, 2017

Review Roundup: Pain of Salvation, Tim Bowness, Last Flight To Pluto, Nerissa Schwarz, Big Hogg, Steve Hackett

While we publish a variety of features on this site, many of our more in-depth album reviews appear elsewhere around the InterWebs. We've compiled a list with links to recent reviews both here and elsewhere.


"Clearly a concept album about death, this progressive metal tour-de-force is also a love story, and manages to cover religion, sex, “politics, and poetry” along the way. Musically, the band delivers on the promise of a return to a heavier sound, and there are brutal palm-muted riffs and speaker-busting bass rumbles aplenty. Léo Margarit is the hero here; more thunder than lightning, he hits the drums so hard that you’ll have to sit up straight and pay attention. Still, with three people playing keys, the songs exhibit a variety of textures, from industrial sounding synths and effects to more tender piano."

Full review is at The Prog Report


"The album fully inhabits that 1967-1969 period without coming off as retro, and it’s at least as upbeat as it is offbeat. Don’t fear the strange and unfamiliar, folks; embrace the weird and the wonderful. There are plenty of sing-along hooks and smile-inducing horn breaks here to carry a new listener through the initiation, and once you’re in, you’ll have twice as much fun as your benighted friends. Recommended for fans of progressive music, jazz, Bob Fosse dance sequences, Peter Cook & Dudley Moore films, boozy halloween parties, and Stonehenge."

Full review is at Progradar


"Classic Hackett leads cry the alarm whilst diverse musical accents frame Clapton-esque vocal melodies; the more the merrier, indeed."

One Sentence Review right here on Radio Eclectic
 

"Last Flight To Pluto makes a grand entrance onto the prog scene with their debut album, ‘See You At The End’. Their energy is brash, raw, and engaging across six tracks and an hour of music—a deft alchemy of late 70’s Rush and late 90’s Massive Attack in roughly 65-35 ratio. Band leaders Alice Freya (lead vocals, guitar) and Daz Joseph (drums, vocals) put in years on the cover band circuit, while young lead guitarist Jack’o McGinty must have studied ‘A Farewell To Kings’ from birth to channel Alex Lifeson’s riffs and solos so naturally. The result is that this band, while young as a unit, are experienced, confident, and very tight."

Full review is at Progradar


"Musically, the focus throughout the album remains on Bowness’ vocals and the rich bed of keys. And there are a lot of keys, strongly reminiscent of Tony Banks’ work on ‘…And Then There Were Three’ and ‘Duke’. Bowness mostly sidesteps the busier side of prog virtuosity in favor of layers of different key sounds, including Moog synths, bright piano, Hammond, and various blips and bloops. Tasty kit work and lyrical fretless bass lend more than a hint of jazz to the rhythm section, while the guitars tend to add texture, such that the few times a solo cranks up, its impact is felt doubly."

Full review is at The Prog Report


"Most of the songs move between pretty, bright uses of the electric harp and mellotron—more like the ‘hippie’ and folky-psychedelic sounds you probably associate with the instrument—and downright frightening brown notes that creep, circle, but never quite obscure the harp. Indeed, Schwarz has come up with some truly inventive uses for an instrument that often occupies a place of nostalgic filigree in many compositions. Here, the sounds range from meadowy to proggy to atmospheric to reminiscent of Taurus bass pedals."

Full review is at Progradar


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