Who is the band? What is their history? What motivates them?
A keyboard driven symphonic prog band in the vein of Emerson Lake and Palmer, Vangelis, and Pink Floyd. Anthony Davis has passed since the CD release date, but he was instrumental in helping to put together this piece of art.
1. Look! It’s Coming – Wow! What a bold opening! Those Vangelis – like keys, then the majestic surrounding keys layering on top. Wonderful beginning and the best song on the album for me. You can feel the voyage is gonna be epic with this grand opening. 7:45 minutes of power keys and synths. Magic. Then vocals, “look, it’s coming.” Interesting ELP thunder keys and background supporting vocals with drums making their entrance. Great classic lead vocals. The electrics light up and provide cool blistering riffs. But it’s that almost pipe organ sound that really drives this one.
2. Old World News – Acoustic and electric guitars open this one with the support of synths. Then an ELP keyboard driven extravaganza, complete with intentional breaks. That “Ray Manzarek” sounding organ with running keys and synths, drums and an all hands soaring melody. 8:22 minutes of power keys, guitar chords and drums in your face. Another favorite, despite its epic proportions, you don’t want to end. The vocals have that heavy sound to it. The story really begins to be laid out lyrically on this song. The guitar riffs are excellent.
3. Truth Seeker – Beautiful piano to open this one. Almost something out of a ‘silent era’ film score. Just wonderful. Then you are surrounded by majestic synths and keys everywhere. Galloping guitars and drums driving a new melody. Vocals are back “now that you have found the light, how does it feel?” “Will we heed, will we learn, to live forever in harmony?” The keys are just incredible. At 9:48 minutes, each song building upon the last, making each epic longer. If you’ve been reading my reviews, you know I love that!
4. Belteshazzar’s Dream – Another 8:10 minute anthem of power. Cool harpsichord sounding keys along with drums. Majestic and triumphant. Let your mind drift as the keys sooth and demand your concentration.
5. Plowshares Into Swords – The epic and title track at 10:15 minutes. Beautiful piano opens this epic before guitar chords, drums, and that wonderful organ take over. Those cool ELP breaks. “Can you see it, the words the prophets wrote?” A Biblical story set to power chords and majestic synths. Yeh, I like this one allot. Enough synths and keys to fill any one album. The ride and the journey on this one are exciting and full of action.
6. Locust Swarm – Soft keys to open the closer before the power builds with synths and effects. Effortless playing which just rocks you to sleep after all the power of the last five songs. Perfect. Spacey synths and far off places wonder around the mind as the keys take you away like Vangelis. A possible nod to Saga and the Silent Night epics of the past along with that spacey locust theme.
Rating: 9/10 – If you want a trip back to the kind of music Keith Emerson made back in the 70s, this is your ticket. New sounds with familiar reminders. A story filled with five epic tracks and one closer. This will make anyone missing that keyboard driven sound happy. Just sit back and let your mind wander.
Reviewed by Prof on June 23rd, 2010