This is the Norwegian progressive rock band’s second release and debut on the Karisma Records label (first one was independent).“Helike” is a true concept recording with only two extended tracks based on the “real” city of Atlantis. If this were issued on vinyl, each side would be an entire song. One might guess the sound of water would be involved here and they’d be right. “Helike” begins and ends with the natural sound of water.
D’AccorD claims inspiration from 70's bands like Genesis, King Crimson, Pink Floyd and Jethro Tull. They have been around since 2009 and have opened for Focus, but mainly played lots of gigs in Norway. You can certainly hear the said influences. I hear a large amount of Genesis flavor in the keyboards but I also hear some odd bits and pieces thrown in. The overall sound strikes me as a more aggressive and varietals Frupp (70's progressive Irish band) but you enjoy a good deal more complexity and technically advanced musicianship on “Helike”. Also D’AccorD fuse the old sounds of Genesis (Foxtrot, Nursery Cryme, etc) with the modern day production and neo prog styles. The best part is the classic progressive rock shines through more.
From a compositional standpoint, I found both extended tracks to flow nicely, connect perfectly, and sustain my attention. In other words, they did a damn good job of putting the music parts together in a logical way. I also like the fact that the band did not try to over do it. The only minor complaint I had was that when the vocalist got forceful and louder, he sounded like a bit like Ozzy Osbourne. It was the only thing that didn’t keep the entire CD in a harmonious way. Happily, when the singer stays calm and in the soft mode, then the vocals are very nice. The music cashes in on most of the 70's progressive bands you know and love and with that, the listener will be glad to have a listen to the good old times.
Reviewed by Lee Henderson on September 9th, 2011