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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Clover Seeds

The Opening

Review by Gary Hill

I’m sure there are those who will quibble with this disc being put into the progressive rock heading. Certainly, if it is prog rock, it’s on the more metallic side of neo-prog. The truth is, I’d consider this like a cross between more heavy neo-progressive music and Tool. As such, I could see it fitting outside the bounds of progressive rock quite well, too. Either way, though, it’s a moody and dark album that’s both intriguing and entertaining. While it does have a tendency towards saminess, there is variety and it never fails to be interesting.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2011  Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Over Camellia

This pounds in extremely heavy, a bit like some modern alternative rock meets nu-metal. As they drop it down for the verse, though, it is closer to modern neo-prog.

Fam(I)liar
While this is still heavy, it is mellower with a more progressive rock arrangement at its core. It calls to mind Tool a bit, but with more of a neo-prog tilt. The song structure on this is quite complex and powerful.
Flowers
In terms of its musical territory, this seems to fall somewhere between the opener and its follow-up.
Higher
In general, this song isn’t a big change from the songs we’ve heard to this point. It’s good, but somewhat “more of the same.”
Brand New Day
A mellower tune, the percussion plays a prominent role here. This is more decidedly progressive rock oriented and even works out to more jam-band-like territory. It’s tasty and a nice, moody, piece of variety. They power this up a bit more as they continue, but it remains more subdued than some of the other songs. That said, the arrangement is much more involved and lush at the same time.
Calling Me Down
Not really exceptional, this number feels a lot like the bulk of the music on the CD.
The Opening
Another rather moody neo-prog styled tune, there are some valid comparisons to Tool on this one, too. The track rocks out more later and in some ways is more mainstream than that Tool reference would indicate. There’s some especially tasty guitar work to be found on this number. It gets a bit heavier at times.
For Those?
This is more purely prog-like, but in a very definite neo-prog style. It’s a cool tune that is a bit more easily accessible than some of the other music here. It powers out to something that really feels like it could have come, with a slightly different arrangement, from any number of newer progressive rock acts. There is a killer heavier section that makes one think of Zeppelin’s “Kashmir” with a more modern sound. Then, they turn it to a moody, rather spacey exploration. Somewhat whispered vocals come over the top of this as they continue. This is quite a dynamic and powerful piece of music that works through a number of cool sounds. Different segments return later as the cut continues to evolve. This is, without question, the strongest piece on show here.
Enough
This track is pretty typical of the music found on the disc. While it’s good, it might not be as strong a closing as “For Those?” would have been. Still, it’s contrast between mellower opening section and harder rocking ending works well.
 
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