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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Cinema

The Magix Box

Review by Gary Hill

The mix of sounds here is intriguing. I suppose the closest comparison would be Tangerine Dream, but that’s only so accurate. This is cool instrumental music that gets crunchy at times, but very melodic and mellow at others. Different elements and different instruments seem to dominate at different points in the disc. All in all, this is quite an effective set for those who enjoy instrumental music.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2013  Volume 6 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Dancing Dolphins

Somehow the rhythm section on this makes me think of King Crimson. There are a lot of other melodic, but still rather crunchy, progressive rock elements at play on the outside of that, though. Later sections get more electronic and rather fusion-like.

Monastery of Madness
Percussion starts things here. Organ sounds bring a different angle to the piece as it continues. The percussion drives this quite a bit, but there are some seriously symphonic elements at play. The piece gets more electronic and some scorching hot guitar solos over the top later.
Beyond Andromeda
Coming in mellow and tentative, this works up to a crescendo. Then a new melodic arrangement joins. This makes me think of both Tangerine Dream and Vangelis. There are a number of shifts and changes and some bits of astronaut radio chatter are heard here and there.
222 Dreams
Percussive and yet melodic, this is a cut that combines a jazzy sort of vibe with more electronic progressive rock. Pink Floyd is, at times, a valid reference point.
African Queen
Tribal drums open this and the sounds of an elephant are heard. There is something here that sounds like didgeridoo. The cut works out to more Tangerine Dream like music. That said, the percussion is extremely active in the mix. There are also more sounds of jungle animals in the mix here and there.
Al-Andalus
This comes in mellow and quite classical in nature. It grows out from there with an electronic take on that same kind of musical element. Symphonic sounds grow out from there as this pounds forward.
Colouring Clouds
Mellow music with electronic sounds and atmospheric elements makes up this pretty tune. It’s one of the most melodic and subtle pieces here. That Pink Floyd reference is somewhat valid on this piece, too.
Oriental Breeze
The basic musical concept here remains unchanged. There are some definite Asian elements brought to the table, though. This is an effective cut that is among the best here.
Distant Bells
Mixing the same basic musical concepts we’ve heard throughout with more fusion and some definite Pink Floyd vibes, this is another intriguing piece.
Total Transition
This isn’t a big change of any kind. Instead we get another melodic instrumental with electronic prog at its heart. Later it seems to become a more energized jam that combines something like Kraftwerk with something like Tangerine Dream.
 
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