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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Fischer’s Flicker

Katmandon’t!

Review by Gary Hill

Probably the easiest label here would be “classic rock.” A lot of the music on this set feels like it would have been at home in the 1970s, but there are a couple points where the set seems more modern. It covers quite a bit of range, from blues and country to progressive rock, jazz and a lot more within that basic heading. This is quite an entertaining and strong release.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2013  Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Music is my Mistress

Some tasty rock based jamming opens this. It has some blues and country in the mix.

Ex-Birthday
There’s a bit more speed and power to this cut. It’s another classy rock tune. The guitar soloing is tasty and the melodies are accessible. This feels like something might have come out of the 1970s, but really that can be said of the majority of the music here.
Souls

Here is one of the cuts that feels more modern. It’s got an almost modern progressive rock vibe to it. It’s not as instantly accessible as some of the other material here, but does have some magical moments packed into it.

Year of the Locust

Piano brings this one in and weaves a very jazzy pattern setting the tone for the piece. In a lot of ways this is sort of a jazz ballad. Sure, there is some classic rock in the mix, too. Keyboards bring some hints of progressive rock at times here, but overall this is a cut that has plenty of jazz and alternative pop in the mix. It’s another that doesn’t really feel like something from the ‘70s. The powered up instrumental segment later in the piece is quite progressive rock and that gives way to a soulful jam. A saxophone solo reinforces that jazz label, though. It works out towards space rock as this instrumental movement continues. It gets brought back to the earlier modes to bring it back to Earth later.

Death of a Dutchman

There is some retro rock here combined with modern alternative pop elements. This is fairly mellow, but also quite tasty. There is a start and stop feel to the tempo of the piece and some dramatic and rather odd elements at play here.

Diamond Blue

This mellower tune has some real classic rock vibes at play. It seems to lean towards a different era. It’s basically a rock ballad with some jazz and other elements in the mix. I like it quite a bit. It might not be a highlight, but it adds some variety and the vocal line is pretty cool.

Three Little Secrets

Now, this cut is certainly progressive rock. It comes in with some powerful prog sounds and is another that feels like it would have fit well in the music of the 1970s. This piece is over nine minutes in length, and has a lot of differing sections and styles. Around the three minute mark it turns towards a more mainstream rock sound for a movement. The first vocals come in over that arrangement. There’s a real accessible and familiar feeling to that vocal portion. There is quite a bit of jazz in this section of the piece. It gets powered up as they move things forward. This is quite an effective pieces, and, in fact, one of the best on the whole disc.

Wound Up Being Me

There’s definitely a classic rock vibe to this cool tune. It’s not as diverse and dynamic as some of the other stuff, but it’s very effective.

Bonfire Memories

Here’s another accessible and retro sounding cut that’s very cool. It’s another that doesn’t wander all that far, but it’s quite potent and one of the highlights of the set.

 
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