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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Bill Mumy

Speechless

Review by Gary Hill

I definitely wouldn’t consider the bulk of Bill Mumy’s material to be progressive rock. However, this instrumental album would pretty easily fit into that category, and that is why I have included it there. The music here covers a wide range, but it’s generally pretty mellow. If I had to pick one artist for comparison, I’d say “Steve Howe,” but that is only so close. This is all Bill Mumy and all tasty.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2010  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Depth of Feel

Very textural, this is a pretty piece of music that would certainly fit well under the heading of progressive rock. I can hear bits of Pink Floyd and Tangerine Dream here.

Pardon Me Asking
While this is in more of a rock music motif, it’s still got some definite progressive rock built into it. I can also hear bits of Dire Straits. Pink Floyd wouldn’t be out of the question either. It’s certainly still within the realm of what could be called “progressive rock.”
Even Where the Wind Won't Blow

Although there’s a bouncy sort of element to this, it’s very classical in tone. I don’t think there is anyone reading this who would discount this track being put into progressive rock. I suppose Tangerine Dream is again an appropriate comparison, but so is Vangelis.

Come Stay With Me in My Hole in the Ground
Dramatic and powerful this lives in the territory where progressive rock and new age meet. 
Caught My Shadow
Combining nearly classical sections with more pure rock, there are parts of this that definitely make me think of Pink Floyd. It’s perhaps less progressive rock than some of the other material here, but I wouldn’t have any trouble putting it there. Mumy’s guitar solos throughout the majority of the piece.
Barns
Much more textural in nature, the comparisons to Tangerine Dream are again appropriate. There are some Pink Floyd-like elements here, too, though. 
Winter Soldier Watching
If there’s a track here that doesn’t fit under the heading of progressive rock, this would be it. It’s a bluesy rocker that still has a few elements of prog, but overall it’s just a solid rock instrumental. Eric Clapton and Dire Straits both come to mind. Of course, so do the Ventures at some points.  
Speechless
A mellower piece, this somehow reminds me a bit of something Steve Howe might do. Not his solo acoustic deal, though. Although it’s less progressive rock oriented than some of the other music here, that element is still present. 
Wish It Away
A bluesy number, the progressive rock elements are more subtle here, but they still exist. I can hear bits of that Steve Howe sound on this, too. 
Night For Day
With a more lush arrangement, this one is a pretty and quite mellow. It would fit pretty neatly into a new age sort of heading.
If We Have Another Day Tomorrow
A folky little dittie, this is based heavily on an acoustic guitar exploration. It’s probably not really progressive rock, but then again it’s not that far from some of Steve Howe’s music.
When I'm Missing You
Another that’s rather ballad-like and quite pretty, this reminds me more of something by Joe Satriani.
 
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