Parade is the band founded by guitarist Chris Johnson, who has previously worked with Fish and Mostly Autumn. Parade also consists of Anne-Marie Helder (Panic Room, Mostly Autumn) on keyboards and vocals, and Gavin Griffiths (Fish, Panic Room and Mostly Autumn) on drums. Completing the line up are Simon Snaize (guitar) and Patrick Berry (bass). On their debut album The Fabric there are also guest appearances by Mostly Autumnís Bryan Josh, Heather Findley and Olivia Sparnenn.†
Well thatís quite a list of well known performers of modern progrock. So I was very interested to see if the sum of all the members were more than just an average band. Sorry to say, it isnít. It may well have something to do with occasions like this where you find you have high expectations and then realise after a while theyíre not being met, and youíre left feeling very disappointed. And so it is with this first effort for Chris and Anne-Marie. Most songs are what Iíd call mediocre. Thereís a certain sharpness missing, including, unfortunately, no pretty guitar or synth soloís. An example of a mediocre song is the second track Come Alive. If you like this one you will probably have no problems with all the other songs, but to be honest, I wasnít that impressed. A better song is The Diamond, which has some interesting parts sung by Anne-Marie (if youíre into All About Eve songs), ending with a nice guitar solo played by Bryan Josh. High Life is a simple enough pop-song. The Dogs is more than 5 minutes, inducing something resembling somnolence, including some very irritating voices. Facing down, Feedline and Cut are below par as well, and
I sure hope their next CD will bring me more musical joy.
†**† Cor Smeets (edited by Paul Watson)
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