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Non-Prog CD Reviews

Ivan Beecroft


Review by Gary Hill

A lot of people these days just listen to a song here and there rather than a whole album. That will benefit this set. This is made up of a string of solid songs. The problem is, the sequence of the album makes the album less than the sum of the parts. I think a good producer would have been a great idea because I doubt anyone with real production experience would have allowed the album to be sequenced this way.

The problem is that all the hard rocking songs are set at the beginning of the album. By about the mid-point we get a couple melodic rockers followed by a series of ballads. There just isn't enough variety from one of those to another to really let them stand up on their own. Ivan Beecroft's vocals at times make me think of Ozzy Osbourne and at other points of Axl Rose. The thing is, the vocal lines don't vary enough, meaning that with too many similar songs too close together, they all start to sound the same. This album would have been so much stronger if he'd just sprinkled those rocker throughout the set using them to separate the mellower tracks. Still, as I said, if you listen to only one or two songs at a time, you'll probably like just about everything here.

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Track by Track Review
This powers in hard rocking and quite tasty. There is a shift toward the melodic end of the spectrum, but still with a lot of crunch. As the vocals enter this has a polished kind of grunge rocking sound to it.
Say It to My Face

There is a weird radio type introduction on this. It powers out with some hard rocking stuff from there. I like the crunch guitar sound on this number a lot, but the vocals aren't as big a winner as they were on the opener. Still, this is a bit rawer, and that's a good thing. There is a melodic drop down section on the piece.

You Can't Take My Soul
This comes across even rawer. I like the ascending progression of the piece. It's a solid number that works pretty well. It almost makes me think of what you might get if you mixed Alice in Chains with Cheap Trick.
Got a Reputation

This feels like a cross between the Sex Pistols and The Ramones. I dig the punk energy and hooks on the cut. It's a lot of fun.

She Said

A lot more of a melodic rocker, this is strong. It's a nice cool down and bit of variety. Yet there is enough crunch here to keep it from landing under the "ballad" heading.


Here is another melodic rock with some pop-like hooks. This is good stuff for sure. It's a bit cleaner and more involved than the previous number.

How Do You Sleep at Night

With a lot of piano built into it, there is almost a Beatlesesque vibe to this. It's another melodic rocker that's quite strong.

Broken Wing

A child's voice (or perhaps someone who inhaled helium - it sounds like a voice from South Park) opens this cut. This is the ballad that Beecroft has hinted at for a while. This makes me think of Ozzy Osbourne quite a bit.

Ordinary Man

Another that lands in balladic territory, this isn't as effective as the last one. There is a bit of a proggy, dreamy quality to this.

Lost Child
Here we get another ballad. This really doesn't sound all that different from the last couple tracks. Here's where the sequence of songs is really starting to hurt the album a lot. Taken by itself this is a good tune. It just doesn't get a chance to breathe amidst too many similar tracks.
One Last Goodbye
I always question the wisdom of ending an album with a ballad. In this case, it's an even worse decision because it lends to the monolithic nature of the set. This is not a bad song, but it can't stand up with this much similar music lined up near it. This is another that makes me think of Ozzy Osbourne a bit.
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