Artist/ Band: Spock's Beard
Title: Octane
Label: InsideOut Music
Year of Release: 2005
Artist/ Band Link (click for details/ ordering)

The Review:

From the opening Mellotron chords you are given a reminder of what Spockís Beard was. Now on album two of post Neal, weíre seeing more departures of what Nealís musical vision. Even though I like all Spockís Beard cds with Neal, I always thought of them as a Neal Morse project. Now that Neal is gone, the others can stretch out and try new things, whether thatís going to appeal to longtime fans or not. I personally like the new direction that Feeling Euphoria started and continues in Octane. The is more rock than prog and thatís fine by me. Nick, Alan, Ryo and Dave have forged a new chapter in Spockís Beard. Giving it a more modern ďaccessibleĒ sound to bring in a wider audience. They havenít sold out just reevaluated their course.

I was thinking of the Nealís version of the band as the parental model and once gone it was up to the ďchildrenĒ to have their own identity. Iíve read that some reviewers say Nick sounds like Neal. Yeah I can hear it but I think thatís a natural thing being all those years as back-up to Neal would do that. But I also hear some influence musically to the late Kevin Gilbert. Not in any one song but in the approach and attitude Kevin did, especially on Shaming of the True.

Back to the music of Octane. Itís a nice mixture of hard rock, ballads, symphonic passages with some nods to itís earlier incarnation. If you enjoyed Nickís solo release and Feeling Euphoria then, Octane will be very pleasing to your ears. This is by far one of the best releases to come from InsideOut Music.

Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on February 8th, 2005

Tracks:

- A Flash Before My Eyes -
1. The Ballet of the Impact
2. I Wouldn't Let It Go
3. Surfing Down The Avalanche
4. She Is Everything
5. Climbing Up That Hill
6. Letting Go
7. Of The Beauty Of It All

8. NWC
9. There Was A Time
10. The Planet's Hum
11. Watching The Tide
12. As Long As We Ride

Reviewed Discography

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