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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Echo Us

The Windsong Spires

Review by Gary Hill

You can always count on Echo Us to deliver classy progressive rock. This album is no exception. This set really flows like one work, rather than a series of separate songs. It has a tendency to land on the mellower side, but also gets more rocking times. This is melodic prog that has both modern and classic elements. There is a good mix of vocal and instrumental songs. All in all, I'd consider this another success story in the Echo Us catalog.

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Track by Track Review
We Seek the Descending Levers
This begins mellow and grows out gradually with a real electronic ambient vibe to it. The vocals come in over the top as the number continues. This piece eventually gets into some potent prog zones for an extended instrumental movement. While everything about it is magic, the guitar in particular stands out. Eventually it drops back down and the vocals return.
If You Can Imagine
There are dreamy elements here. This is melodic progressive rock at its best. It's modern, but also packed full of classic textures. I dig the piano movement later in the piece a lot.
The Night Sky
Feeling almost like an extension of the previous cut, this has a dream-like quality to it. This is a killer melodic piece of music.
When the Windsong Spires
More of a rocking number, this is still built well within a melodic prog vibe. It reminds me a lot of the kind of thing the band Esquire does. I can make out some Yes of the 90s in the mix, too.
One of the more dynamic pieces on the disc, this is a powerful and dynamic number that really works well.
(Fly You Home)
An energetic and classy melodic prog song, this is a strong tune. It has some world music in it along with an intriguing percussive base.. A dropped back section later makes me think of Alan Parsons Project a little.
And When They Dance at Dusk
Pretty and dramatic, this is such a strong song. It's not a big departure, but it works very well.
I'll Wave You In
A dynamic cut, there is a lot of style and charm to this. Again, no molds are being broken here, but when it's this good, that doesn't matter.
(And Acquiesce)
This is intricate and powerful. There is a lot of drama and charm built into this. There are some non-lyrical vocals, but otherwise this is an instrumental.
If We Can Breathe Again.
Another instrumental with a lot of beauty and style in the mix, I like this one a lot, too. It feels a bit like a natural continuation of the previous tune.
...Under the Smallest Sky
At more than 11-and-a-half minutes of music, this is the epic of the set. The track seems to come out of the previous one. The opening sections are balladic, and that serves as the background for the first vocals. The cut works through quite a few changes, getting louder and times and mellower at others. It is dramatic and powerful music and makes for a great closer. It has plenty of melodic prog with modern and classic tones both in the mix.
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