C-Sides are a new trio from South Wales consisting of Martin Rosser (guitars, keyboards, backing vocals), Dan Fry (lead vocals, bass guitar) and Allan Mason-Jones (drums, percussion). They were all once members of Magenta, the well-known Welsh prog rock band led by keyboardist Rob Reed and singer Christina Booth. On their debut album Devitrification, produced by Martin Rosser, they got some assistance from Alan McCarthy and Emily Bates (both backing vocals) and Matthew Rosser (percussion, guitar).
First song The Ribbon contains some elements similar to the music of the latest Rush-records, with strong guitar playing and progressive vocal lines. However, the drums sound very poor and rather disappointing. The drum beats are not only just a split second late, but also played with a very simple rhythm. Times For Me is an up-tempo modern rock song, but with the same problems concerning the drums. In Master Plan I had troubles with keeping my attention. What a simple tune this is! And I'm sorry to say it again, but I'm just getting mad of those irritating drums! Even I can play better than Mason-Jones!
Stand Up even contains a disco rhythm of the seventies! My two grandchildren of 2 and 4 just love this song. They danced around asking after six minutes: one more time, grandpa! Well, do I have to say more? The other five songs didn't change my opinion about this non-progressive album. Many things go wrong on this debut; the absolute lowlight is the false-tuned acoustic guitar in Devitification, part 2. Please forgive me, but this album sounds as being recorded for teenagers. I expect this kind of music from young students in the first grade of the Rock Academy, but not from musicians who played in an outstanding band like Magenta.
* Cor Smeets (edited by Peter Willemsen)
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