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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Moon Over Mountain

The Colors of Life

Review by Gary Hill

This might not belong under progressive rock. There isn’t a lot of rock here. Still, what there is, lands in the zone of folk prog. Beyond that comparisons to Synergy can be made, so that brings in the progressive rock element. I suppose new age might be a valid reference point, too, but I’m not sure that’s even a thing. A lot of this is instrumental, but there are songs with vocals, too. The first such song is the one misstep of the set as the vocals early on just don’t gel with the music. Beyond that, though, they work well throughout. This is quite a mellow set, but there is a good range throughout.

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Track by Track Review
Yes, I Am Here
This comes in quite sedate, but also very lush. Chorale vocals really help to fill out the arrangement. The track works to more of a slow moving folk prog kind of thing after the extended introduction. A grooving rhythmic element joins before the minute-and-a-half mark. That rhythmic thing drops away around the three-minute mark, landing us somewhere near the point where we came in for the rest of the piece.
A Walk in Fall Leaves
Nature sounds are on display as this cut begins. A percussive element brings it in from there with other instrumentation coming in over the top. The vocal presence on this song doesn’t work at all for me. It seems to take away from the beauty of the piece. Ignoring that, though, there are some intriguing musical elements and textures. I really like some of the symphonic textures to this piece. Many of the instrumental melodies are quite cool, too. There is a moving, building kind of energy to it. The fast-paced instrumental break mid-track reminds me of Synergy in some ways. The vocals that come in over the top of that work better than the earlier ones did. The piece works into more instrumental territory from there. The next vocals come in non-lyrical and a bit operatic. They work better in augmenting the music than did the early ones. The lyrical vocals that follow are also a bit more successful in merging with the instrumental arrangement.
You Can't Go Home Again
A thunderstorm begins this piece. The music comes in with a bit of that Synergy vibe, but perhaps more organic than that. Eventually this gets into a bit more of a rocking motif that has a definite folk prog turned electronic edge. That doesn’t stay around long, though, and the cut drops back again.
Dry Your Eyes
This number is gentle and so pretty. It skirts the ground between folk prog and new age music. It has both organic and electronic elements merging in a satisfying arrangement. It’s one of the most effective pieces of the whole set, really.
The Face in the Moon
Another cut with vocals, they work really well here. This has a lot of that of that folk prog vibe to it. Musically, it is both organic and electronic. There are some nice changes built into the cut.
A Nation Divided
This is a particularly mellow number. It’s also very much set in a folk prog or even new age style. It’s pretty, but not really a standout.
Rather symphonic, this is quite an intriguing piece. It has more artistic elements. It has some of the most effective musical passages of the set, and the vocals work well, too. I like the percussive bits and the whole thing is just classy. I’d consider this to be one of the highlights here.
After the Work Is Done
This comes in quite percussive. There is a strange whistle that shows up here and there. This is one of the more rocking songs. It’s also one of the odder ones, but it works pretty well. It’s is more rhythm oriented than melodic, but there are some solid melodic elements, too.
Heart of the Song
There are lush and pretty tones and textures built into this number. The drumming brings more of a rocking texture at times, but overall this fits well within the new age of folk prog mellow music heading.
One Life
Synergy is a valid reference point here in some ways. There is a pounding percussive section later in the track, as it starts to approach the halfway mark. As it grows back out to intriguing folk music based zones later, it really gets into some cool little bits.
A mellower number at the start, this is a classy closer. It has a good energy and groove at times, and really manages to work quite well. There are some intriguing changes. This definitely occupies the zone between new age and folk prog.
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