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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Forrest Hill

River of Stars

Review by Gary Hill

Alternative rock with a pop music edge is perhaps the overlying theme here. There is some definite variance along the road. Everything here works well, but there are definitely some standouts.

This review is available in book (paperback and hardcover) in Music Street Journal: 2020  Volume 4. More information and purchase links can be found at: garyhillauthor.com/Music-Street-Journal-2020.

Track by Track Review
Million Miles
The horns bring some soulful magic to this cut. It has such a great groove to it. It's catchy, retro textured and yet somehow fresh and modern. This is a classy way to start things.
New Horizon

More of a folk rocker, there is a definite alternative rock edge to this thing. It's another solid tune. It's also fun.

Crazy Days

This has a bit an electronic edge to it. It feels related to 80s music. It's another catchy and strong alternative rocker, too.

Perfect One

A mellower tune, the piano works some magic on this. It's an entertaining alternative rock styled piece.

Nomad in Love

I dig this poppy alternative rocker. This is so tasty. It's nothing Earth-shattering, but it's just so good.

Floats Away
There is a dreamy quality to this tune. As good as the previous number was, this is even stronger. The classical strings are a great touch, and the whole thing just sets a great tone and mood.
Sacred Ground

Another that has a lot of alternative rock or pop in the mix, this is a strong tune, but not up to the same level as the last couple. Still, the strings add a lot to the number.

A Part of Me

This number has more of a retro, classic element to it. Horns return with style. The organ lends some classic vintage tones. All in all, this catchy cut is another highlight.

Guardian Angel

Another catchy groove, this has more of a full-on alternative rock sound. The organ still lends some retro textures, though. The backing vocals are a great touch, as well.

Kiss Goodnight

Not a big change, this is another effective rocker. It does have some hints of 1950s rock and roll to me, but they are subtle.

River of Stars

Intricate acoustic guitar is at the heart of this mellow tune. Classical strings definitely serve the tune well. This is a mellower cut. It's actually one of the highlights of the disc, but I personally thing that maybe a bit more rocking song might have been better in the closing slot. That said, this gets into some almost proggy zones at times.

 
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