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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Nicolas Meier


Review by Gary Hill

Let's make one thing clear at the start: this is really not progressive rock. It's very much progressive music, though. The last song is the only one that really would be considered prog rock, because it's the only one with any real rock in the mix. The sound of the rest of the album, though, is based in world music meets fusion. It's quite effective and very strong. This is an instrumental album that never feels tired or redundant.
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Track by Track Review
The Eye of Horus

Drums lead this into being. From there we get prog rock, world music, fusion and more merging into a killer jam. This is fast paced, exotic and particularly effective. It was really a great choice as opening salvo. It moves out to mellower material later in the track. As violin solos over the top of that, it makes me think of Jean-Luc Ponty.

Still Beautiful
This mellower cut is very much a fusion ballad styled number. It's quite pretty and compelling. It gets rather involved later in the piece.
There is a lot of world music soloing built into this cut. It's definitely part fusion and part world music.
This is mellower yet. It's full on world music.  It gets more involved later as more instruments join. That's when it moves toward progressive music.
Legend (for Jeff Beck)
Fast paced and powerful, this is a great world music meets fusion cut. This is quite a journey getting into some almost Al Di Meola like territory at times.
I really like this one a lot. It is perhaps among the most actually prog rock based things here. It has some great melodies and sounds. It's a piece with a lot of charms, really.
Rose On Water
There is a real classical music based sense of wonder to this. It's not far removed from some folk prog.
Flying Spirits
Very mellow world music starts this and moves it forward gradually. It gets more energized and moves more in the direction of fusion as it continues. Still, the world music remains quite strong on this piece.
In some ways this is serene. It's mellower than some of the rest. The world music based instrumental work, though, is packed with emotion. It is on fire with passion.
More powered up fusion blended with world music drives this fast paced cut. It goes through a number of shifts and changes and really rocks in a lot of ways.
JB Top (for Billy Gibbons)
Here we get the only real rocker of the set. This thing is purely on fire. Of course, it's supposed to ZZ Top like. I'd consider it closer to something like Steve Vai or Joe Satriani, though. This is a powerhouse fusion number.
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