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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Kit Downes

Light from Old Stars

Review by Gary Hill

Some might consider this album to be full on jazz rather than fusion or progressive rock. Personally, I think there is enough rock music here to land it under the prog heading. Of course, your mileage may vary. That said, if you like jazz mixed with rock you will enjoy this. It’s quite a good album with enough variety to keep it interesting throughout.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2013  Volume 5 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Wander and Colossus

Waves of sound rise up slowly to start things. It works out to sort of a freeform jazz meets progressive rock instrumental movement from there. It’s quite a cool melodic journey with a number of themes that emerge, evolve and get reinterpreted.

Bleydays
This is a bit less of a straight line type of musical journey. That said, it’s no less jazzy. That’s for certain. It’s a cool tune. There’s a pretty crazed saxophone meets drums section later in the piece.
Outlawed
Here things start with a more traditional jazz jam. The groove that we’re taken into is a bit more open, but no less dramatic. I love the bass work on this thing. It really drives a big chunk of the song. This is a great piece of music.
What's The Rumpus?
This jam is a bit more high energy. It’s no less compelling. It’s fairly freeform and leans towards Rock In Opposition.
Two Ones
This starts tentatively and grows gradually in a very freeform and understated, yet chaotic, way.
Falling Dancing
Less than a minute in length, this is just a chaotic piano solo.
Owls
Bouncy and rather fun, this feels a bit like something that might have been on a 1960s television show. It’s rather freeform, but it also grooves.
The Mad Wren
Despite the title, this is a bit less crazed than some of the other stuff here. It’s got a more straight line progression. Still it manages to rock and it does have some shifts. The false ending in the middle is one of the surprises in store for the listener.
Jan Johansson
Although there is a persistent rhythmic element, this is fairly sedate and mellow.
 
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