In 2006, British band Frost* released their debut album Milliontown and I was overwhelmed by the sound of that album. In particular, the title track and Hyperventilate are prog tracks with a very high quality level. Bandleader, keyboardist and singer Jem Godfrey proved to be a very gifted musician and composer. I had the chance to see Frost* on a live stage just before the band quit. Apparently, they didnít quit because in 2008, the band returned with a brand new album. In my opinion, Experiments In Mass Appeal is not as strong as their debut. However, the album introduced singer and guitarist Declan Burke from Darwinís Radio. His contribution provided a new dimension to Frostís music. I think his participation during live performances would have been a real reinforcement for the band. I almost saw this line-up live on stage in The Netherlands, but unfortunately, they all cancelled the scheduled concerts. I think the main reason for cancelling was the fact that drummer Andy Edwards had left the band.
Frost*Fest Live contains a large part of the bandís performance at the RosFest Festival held at the Keswick Theater in Glenside, Philadelphia in May 2009. This album shows we all missed something special. After a short and weird introduction of the band, Frost* kick off with an excellent rendition of Hyperventilate. No less a man than Spockís Beardís Nick DíVirgilio is responsible for the fine drumming. Itís just fantastic to hear how this professional musician performs throughout the album. We all know that John Mitchell is a great guitarist, but on Black Light Machine, a track dealing with watching too much television, he tortures his instrument in a rather nasty way, though. Jem Godfrey is not only a great musician, but also a storyteller and entertainer. Just before the song Pocket Sun begins, he tells the audience what the lyrics are about. The fine ballad Saline and the up-tempo tune Dear Dead Days, both taken from the second album, are the last two songs recorded at the RosFest Festival. The new song The Forget You Song, recorded at the Cube in East Sussex, is a bonus track.
For people who canít get enough of this short Frost* live album and who are in for a real treat please look out for the Philadelphia Experiment. It will contain the whole concert on CD and DVD featuring the amazing title track of the bandís debut album plus a 45-minute Frost Report of the making of this concert. For more information, see the bandís website. Look out for a review on the Background Magazine site in the near future. Until that time we have Frost*Fest Live.
**** Henri Strik (edited by Peter Willemsen)
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