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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Keravel

Must

Review by Gary Hill

There is something to be said for keeping it short and to the point. This album could have probably benefited from some reduction in terms of the amount of music. The reason is that, while the music here is good, it’s all a bit too similar. So, by the end it’s all starting to blend together. A little variety here and there – perhaps a song or two with some vocals – would have done wonders to break things up and keep it fresh. Still, the instrumental prog rock meets new age approach is effective. It’s just a little strained by trying to fill as many slots as it does here.


This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2010  Volume 3 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
C-U C-Me

Sound effects and textures lead this off and then a noisy guitar rises up. Other elements come and go as this continues gradually. It has a bit of a techno flavor to it, but also a lot of modern progressive rock built into the concept. The keyboards bring in a different flavor and some intriguing melodies. This works through a number of changes and alterations and becomes quite powerful. It’s not that far removed from something by Tangerine Dream or others of that style. I can make out a little Pink Floyd at times, too.

War Dogs
As much as I liked the opening cut, this one is even stronger. It’s got more of a fusion element to it and it’s rather bouncy and kind of fun. The keyboards seem even more prominent here. The Tangerine Dream and even Pink Floyd references are still present.
Love Me
Gentle and sedate, this is quite a pretty piece of music. It gets more of a rock aspect to it later and calls to mind both Tangerine Dream and Enigma in my mind. 
A Quiet Moment
In some ways this almost feels like a continuation of the previous number. It’s good and quite pretty. 
Walk with Us
There’s no big alteration here, but this track is more purely fusion-like. 
Seven Clouds
In a lot of ways this feels like a continuation of the previous number, but there is more of a world music element to it and some of the melodies are extremely intriguing. 
Stranger's Beat
As one might guess from the title, there’s more of a rhythmic nature to this track. Otherwise, it’s quite similar to the other music here. This is good stuff, but there’s not enough variance for a reviewer to really differentiate each piece well. 
A Wish or Two
The sounds of nature lead us out in a gentle way. From there we get a groove that’s more purely jazz oriented than anything to this point on the set. The piano really drives a lot of this. 
Bounced Off
Another that starts off rhythmically, this has a lot of jazz within its structures, too. Strings bring a classical edge to it later. 
Soul Mates
More new age styled instrumental prog, this is pretty and enchanting, if not extremely different. 
For Keeps
Some of the piano work on this makes me think of Rick Wakeman and in some ways I could picture him doing this number. It’s got a lot of emotion built into it and it’s one of my favorite pieces on show here. There’s some tasty guitar work on this track, too. 
Do I Know You?
This is more new age like instrumental prog. It’s pretty, but not overly different from a lot of the rest here. That means that if you are just having this on as music to enjoy it probably won’t be getting stale. However, if you are listening intently to really take in the nuances, it will be starting to seem very redundant and feel a bit like one really long song by this point.
Rumbling
There’s a definite change here. This has more energy and is quite cool. It’s not an enormous alteration, but enough to breathe some new life into the album.
Mysterious Analogies
Another that’s quite a bit like the rest of the music here, this is good, but not exceptional.
Blue Agenda
This is one of the harder rocking pieces on show. It’s a great tune that’s one of the highlights of the set.
 
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