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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Blunda

Messages

Review by Gary Hill

This is great stuff. It’s basically a one man creation, that man being Andy Blunda. I went back and forth on where to land this at Music Street Journal. Is it all progressive rock? No. Does it all have some prog in the mix? Probably. This kind of sits somewhere between 1980s electronic pop and modern prog of acts like Porcupine Tree. Whatever you call it, though, this is great music. Everything is done well and there is plenty of variety within one cohesive sound. I’d love to hear more from this act.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
A Broken Case

Electronic music rises up, gradually getting noisier and more symphonic. It grows out from there with a real progressive rock oriented sound. It’s past the one minute mark when the rhythm section joins. It brings a real Roxy Music kind of vibe when it does. It’s a minute more before it works out to the song proper for the first vocals. This has a real 1980s pop music sound, but still features some of that progressive rock element. This is a very powerful piece that has a lot in common with modern prog. It modulates out to another instrumental section beyond that vocal movement. Then the vocals return in a more energized version of the earlier segment. This has a great groove to it.

If You Want Me
There is more of that 1980s vibe as the keyboard elements start this. It really feels quite a bit like Kraftwerk, too. The vocals come in over the top of this, transforming it into another great tune. This isn’t as powered up as the previous one, but it’s every bit as good. The alternating sections are also in a 1980s music meets electronic progressive rock territory.
Messages
There’s a bit of a reggae vibe as the title track opens. This definitely lands in that 1980s music territory. It’s another powerful cut. It makes me think of Duran Duran quite a bit. I love it. It’s definitely different from either of the first two songs, but fits well with them. There are some great shifts and changes and this is another accessible tune. The instrumental section on this again brings in some progressive rock elements.
Devil Inside
Another with a lot of progressive rock in the mix, this has an intricate and pretty melodic structure. At times it makes me think of the Beatles. When it works out to a more rocking structure (after a couple changes) later that progressive rock element is even more prominent. This is another great piece of music. It is effective, dynamic and covers a lot of territory.
The Money Side
Dreamy 1980s music with a real modern prog edge, this is the least dynamic of the set. That said, it’s not a problem. When it’s this good, it works start to finish.

 

 
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