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Crack the Sky

From the Wood

Review by Gary Hill

Crack the Sky has a history of creating progressive rock. I have to say that without that I'm not sure I'd land this mostly acoustic set there. Don't get me wrong, a lot of this has folk prog built into it. Other pieces at least have some hints of prog at times. There are a few things here that I don't really think show off any progressive rock, though. Still, this is a varied and intriguing disc from start to finish. It's a nice addition to the catalog, and a definite move in a different direction.

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Track by Track Review
I Get High
This bounces in with a lot of cool energy. There are some country angles to this cut, but also plenty of classic rock, funk and other concepts at play. This is quite a fun tune. It's a great way to start things in style. There is some killer guitar soloing further down the road. The prog concepts really come to the forefront as this whole instrumental break intensifies, but it still remains organic and acoustic based.
Lady In The Lake
Coming in more purely prog based, there is a sense of drama here. The song feels more serious and less easy-going. It has some killer twists and turns in a very folk prog vein. The instrumental interplay gets pretty insane further down the road as this takes on a rather Spanish guitar texture.
My New World
There is a bit of a blues rock thing at play on this number. It gets merged with more of the acoustic prog concepts. This makes me think of The Strawbs to some degree. Again, the guitar soloing takes it to a new level of cool.
Fun In Isolation
This is bouncy, blues rocking tune. It's another fun one. It's definitely not the proggiest thing here, but it works pretty well. The short closing jam brings some jazzy, proggy goodness to bear.
Don’t Close Your Eyes
Intricate and dramatic in a slower way, this has so much magic as it gets underway. This is another that makes me think of The Strawbs in some ways.
Outside Of Me
Another that's loaded with a lot of drama in a slower vein, this again has some of that Strawbs thing at play. There are some intriguing melodies and intensification on this piece. The instrumental section has some killer interplay.
Heart Of The Lion
A sea of voices brings this in without any instrumentation. Cool acoustic guitar with a bit of a bluesy edge joins. This builds with a definite folk prog concept at its heart.
Going Downtown
A bouncy, driving rocker, this has plenty of 1970s rock in the mix. I really dig some of the jamming on this. The super deep vocals later don't work all that well for me, though. This is very much a down home acoustic rocker. I don't really hear a lot of prog in the mix on this.
Don’t Feed The Tigers
There is plenty of down-home blues rock built into this. It has a real honky-tonk vibe to it. I'm reminded of The Allman Brothers to a large degree. I really dig the piano work on this a lot. This is another that's fairly devoid of prog.
The Circle Of Life
Now this is more proggy. It has a lot of intricacies as it gets going. The track grows in style with a lot of class. There is some great exploration built into this. It's a classy cut.
Bonus Tracks:
Don’t Close Your Eyes

A much more stripped back version of the earlier song, this has a lot of drama and style built into it. I almost think that I prefer this version of the piece.

Fun In Isolation
Now, this is absolutely a stripped back bluesy acoustic rocker. It's fun, and, again, I think I prefer this take.

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