Jury's Verdict #3
On this page we will list a multiple review of a selection of 3 albums out of the (in our humble opinion) most important or interesting recent releases.
Live In Pennsylvania
Touch The Sky Volume I
Crying Of The Whales
was a great debut album made by German band Abarax.
On this release we could hear influences taken from the music created by
Pink Floyd. Therefore my expectations
were pitched when I received their second album. However, after listening to
a couple of times I came to the conclusion that they couldn't reach
the high level of music performed on their debut album. All songs start in a
nice way, but I lost interest after a while. All tracks tend to sound the same
and the band never actually peak. For me, Blue Room
is just too mediocre. Sadly, but this second effort of Abarax falls
short of my expectations.
are one of the best known progressive rock
bands on the planet. It's obvious that a lot of bands want to play their music.
is such a band that consists of a number of musicians from
other well-known acts that try to perform their music in a different musical style.
I love Floyd's music and it's nice that other people try to do something
different with their songs, but this is not a release I was waiting for. I listened
to it a couple of times even with a smile on my face, but unfortunately that
has been my only reaction. It's nicely done; no more, no less!
Certain album releases
sometimes contain a message that comes along with the music. Some of them deal
about faith and religion which is also the case on this album. Many people
can't separate the music from the lyrics and that might become a problem. That
doesn't apply for me because I always give preference to the music which is
superb on this release by the American three piece
All tracks contain progressive rock the best way possible.
The music sometimes reminded me of Neal Morse,
Iona and even Yes.
For me, this is certainly one of the best albums released in 2010. I'm looking
forward to Touch The Sky, volume 2.
I liked Crying Of The Whales
(2005), the debut album of German band Abarax
very much, but the similarities with the music of
Pink Floyd were obvious. They even
thanked Pink Floyd in the booklet for 'inspirations and a music style we miss
so much'. On their second album Blue Room
the band seemed to have found their own identity, much to my pleasure. The
music can be characterized as neo-prog in the finest tradition with outstanding
melody lines, excellent guitar solos and great harmony singing all very melodic
and mostly mid-tempo. André Blaeute
sings much stronger and more self-assured than he did on the first album.
There's no song on this album that really stands out, but in my opinion the
entire album is one great highlight with no weak spots at all.
Blue Room will definitely end in my
top-5 over 2010. Great album!
listening to this triple (!) live album twice, I've got ambiguous feelings. On
the one hand this is not the way I like to listen to the music of Pink Floyd,
but on the other hand American project Blue Floyd
get my appreciation for doing a great job giving its own
interpretation of Pink Floyd's music. From that point of view Blue Floyd are unique
unlike The Australian Pink Floyd for
instance. The latter has
reached a certain degree of perfection by imitating Pink Floyd. Blue Floyd,
however, leave a lot of room for improvisation, jamming and using a different
musical style thus giving their own interpretation of Pink Floyd's music. Just
for those reasons many things go wrong (that's live!) and not all renditions
are equally played well. Nevertheless, these musicians get my respect for
creating adventurous versions of the well-known Pink Floyd-pieces instead of
If you like progressive rock in the vein of Kansas,
Glass Hammer or
Neal Morse or other typical American bands and moreover you're a
true believer of Christianity, then you should try
Touch The Sky of American trio Supernal
in order to enjoy both the lyrics and the music. Other people, who
like the aforementioned bands, should listen to this album as well trying not
to concentrate on the lyrics, but on the music. And the music is excellent: outstanding
guitar solos, perfect harmony singing and solid compositions. However,
sometimes it's just a bit too radio-friendly, but it always remains tasteful.
For people who wanted to know everything about
Roine Stolt: as a guest musician he's playing a marvellous guitar
solo on Grail, one of the two epic
pieces. I enjoyed listening to this album, one of the better releases this
year, but unlike Neal Morse the lyrics are a bit too explicit...
It took German band Abarax
four years to come up with a successor for the magnificent debut album
Crying Of The Whales. Finally
has arrived and I have mixed feelings about it. The nice thing about
was that the band had specifically started to fill the void of
who will never release new music anymore. Blue Room
however, contains a song which reminds me way too much of
Wind Of Change:
bombastic singing with big refrains and keyboards. This song might not be exemplary
for the rest of the music on Blue Room,
but it's nonetheless indicative:
songs which are sung with a raw rock-like voice and bombastic compositions that
are not interesting enough for their length. Low point is the shamefully
commercial ballad Red Roses And Bullets
which seems to be meant to
catapult Abarax in the MTV Top 10. Rather disappointing.
to judge cover bands is: do they indeed give a fresh outlook on the originals?
A band which is very much able to do this is
Blue Floyd, a collective
consisting of musicians from American southern rock bands
Allman Brothers Band,
Gov't Mule and
Black Crowes. On this triple live CD,
recorded in 2000, the accent lays on jamming. Almost every songs starts as the
classic Pink Floyd
music, but then turns into an extended jam with the
emphasis on the organ and on solos. Many of Floyd's classics get a marvellous
treatment of jam band and fusion bliss for extended periods of time. I keep
playing the three disks in a row, time after time. This is an obligatory
purchase for every Pink Floyd and jam band fan, hell, basically for everybody!
of strange that in general reviewers have a dislike of overly Christian bands.
Although in all fairness, the words these bands use are often overly sweet and
pushy. Neal Morse
is one of the few Christian artists who has been able
to find the right balance of bringing the Christian message and offering
excellent music. Supernal Endgame
has unfortunately not found this
balance yet. Unfortunately, because the music is quite worthwhile, especially
the longer songs bring a lot of proggy pleasure. The short ones are too radio,
or should I say too church-friendly. I could do without these. You also have to
be able to ignore the signing. And if you do, then this is not a bad album to