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Daniel Gauthier


Review by Gary Hill

This is the second album I've reviewed from Daniel Gauthier (with one other review also going to run in this issue being the third). I have to say that I find this set to be very compelling. It has a classic prog texture to it, but with modern angles. There is also a healthy helping of psychedelia here. This release lands in the zone of folk prog a lot of the time. It always lands in the quality zone, though.

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Track by Track Review
Intricate guitar starts both the album and its title track. The number grows outward from there in an organic way with some classy mellow progressive rock stylings. There is a leaning towards Beatles-like sound at points. The vocals eventually enter later, brining some psychedelia with them. A more energetic prog jam later features some killer instrumentation along with multiple layers of vocals.
All Around
I dig the dramatic, mysterious prog vibe of this number. I absolutely love some of the killer bass work on this. In fact, that bass playing leads so much of this tune. The number is on the mellower end of the spectrum, but it's dramatic, full prog and magical. There are some intriguing twists and turns along this musical road.
1700 Days
Another mellow tune, this has some cool guitar work and an intriguing arrangement. It has some real dreamy qualities to it. This is more of a folk prog piece.
The Awakening
There is some intriguing keyboard sound at the heart of music of this number. It has some killer melodic prog work in it. There are some dramatic shifts and turns. Again, the bass work is exceptional. It's a classy instrumental.
The Spirit
I dig the cool melodic prog concept here and all the changes along the road. There are hints of Yes and Supertramp on this song. This has such an amazing transition, getting into some very soaring territory before it's over and done.
This One's for Carl
An acoustic guitar solo, this is intricate and so strong. I'm reminded to some degree of Steve Hackett. This covers quite a bit of territory.
Winter Days
Acapella vocals start this cut. The track builds outward from there to some really killer prog. This is a particularly dynamic tune, with a number of different sections and a great balance between mellower and more rocking zones. This calls to mind Yes in some ways. The addition of the female vocals serves this piece well.
The Search
This has some particularly potent energetic sections. Some the echoey guitar almost brings hints of Americana, while the whole arrangement pushes the prog. Again the bass work is exceptional, but everything on this track is so strong. This is another that reminds me a little of Yes. It's a real powerhouse piece with so many changes and contrasts, including a much mellower section later. There are some definite cinematic vibes on this. While this is less than six-and-a-half-minutes long, it really does feel like an epic. It's one of the highlights of the disc, too.
Calm Down
At almost nine-and-a-half-minutes of music, this is the true epic of the set. It's also one of the most powerful tracks of the album. It has both modern and classic prog textures. It's a growing number with multiple layers of vocals, killer melodic prog concepts and more. I can make out hints of things like Porcupine Tree, modern Marillion and more here. I love the drop down to mellower later and the build back upward before it drops down again.
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