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The Tracks We Leave

Review by Gary Hill

To some degree you know what you are going to get with a new Tempest album. It’s going to be Celtic prog, somewhat in the neighborhood of Jethro Tull. Each new installment, though, manages to expand the catalog and perhaps push the envelope just a little. I like this set quite a bit. It’s perhaps not my favorite from Tempest, but it’s always great to get new material from these guys.

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Track by Track Review
Rantin' Rovin' Robin

An intricate acoustic guitar part opens this. They fire out into some rocking Celtic music from there.

The Tracks We Leave
Piano starts this. Then the sounds of a storm and other background elements emerge. As the music hints at starting to rock, for some reason I’m reminded of the Doors a bit. It turns towards more Celtic rocking sounds from there, though. There is a cool more pure Celtic jam mid track. It gives way to a more rocking movement for the violin solo. Then we get some scorching melodic guitar soloing.
This instrumental has some killer melodies. Various instruments take the lead at various points. It’s another solid Celtic rocker.
September Jig
Another instrumental, this fast paced Celtic prog tune is one of my favorites of the set. It has some great twists and turns and some killer musical moments.
Alle Mann Hadde Fota
The lyrics to this are not in English. It’s got a great combination of traditional Celtic sounds, rock and prog elements. This is another particularly strong piece. It’s energized and quite fun.
Fog on the Bay
Another instrumental, this is classy.
The flute on this begs comparisons to Jethro Tull, but this is all Tempest. I love the organ sounds, too. The whole thing just rocks with style.
The Brown Coffin
This instrumental starts with some traditional Celtic music flavored with some hints of jazz. It works out to more rocking territory as it continues. It even includes a little funky bass. It’s definitely a high energy rocker. It goes through quite a few changes as it continues.
Rattlin' Roarin' Willie
Much more of a traditional Celtic tune, this has enough rock to keep it in the prog rock vein.
The Leitrim Set
This instrumental has a lot of energy. It’s a decidedly Celtic rocker that’s fun.
Surfing to Mecca
Another instrumental, there are (appropriately) some Middle Eastern sounds built into this killer rocker.
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