Drama, Pathos, Intrigue (and some unintentional humor), it’s like an Andrew Lloyd Weber musical! Clive Nolan’s project, Caamora’s She with Polish singer Agnieszka Swita and some other very talented guests is another strong outing as is usual for Mr. Nolan. It might not be as strong as some of his other endeavors like Arena and Pendragon, as that would be a lofty goal indeed. This undertaking still very much stands alone as a project of quality.
The singers include Ms. Swita, Pallas’ Alan Reed, Magenta’s Christina Booth and Clive himself. All bring an impressive dramatic quality in conveying this ancient story of a jealous queen. Based on a novel by H. Rider Haggert, this double disc set is an “epic story of love, adventure and immortality.”
I am impressed most by Christina’s contributions. She sings on the songs “Rescue” with its excellent acoustic guitar work strumming, the melodic “The Bonding,” and the duet with Swita, “Confrontation.” Of course, I am always impressed with Christina. I feel she is one of today’s progressive rock icons.
Some good dramatic cuts include “Resting Place” with a very catchy melody, “Shadows” and its impressively dramatic line as Ayesha (played by Agnieszka) sings “I won’t let you in…” and “Fire Dance,” again conveying a dramatic quality that is unparalleled. Some may find this CD a bit over the top in dramatic delivery, but it would not work in any other way.
Some high quality musicians are involved in the making of She as well. Karl Groom, Mark Westwood, John Jowitt, Hugh McDowell are all recognizable names for those who have knowledge in the progressive rock scene. And those are just a few of the people who took up this undertaking with Mr. Nolan.
This is a top flight project, it even includes a DVD of the cast overdramatizing the concept. Part Weber musical, part Danny Elfman soundtrack, and all Clive Nolan; this is dense, difficult and dramatic music. Isn’t that what prog should be?
Reviewed by Terry Jackson on December 16th, 2008