The Winter Tree (formerly Magnus) is a new project headed by multi-instrumentalist/composer Andrew Laitres a.k.a. Andrew Robinson. Joining Andrew is Mark Bond (vocals, guitars), and Mark’s wife Deb Bond (keyboards). This trio appears on the self titled debut. It sounds like there’s more musicians but it’s three amazing musicians.
The music tends to flow endlessly and if you‘re not paying attention you might miss out on some really good songs. Before I continue, I need to stress that this album sounds best on headphones as well as higher end stereos.
From opening grand sounding “Voices From A Lost Age” (1:53) to longest song on the album, “The Adventures of Prince Caspian” (6:53), you are treated to some very good symphonic melodic progressive rock with the emphasis on melodic.
I really don’t have any favorite songs off the album because as I stated previously that the album flows from track to track. The music gets better every time I listened to it. If I had to give references, I’d say a cross between the world-music era Peter Gabriel and the more recent Pink Floyd and Camel. There’s also a mystical vibe I get on my most current listen.
In closing, if you’re looking for some calming progressive based music then look no further than The Winter Tree’s self titled debut. It’s easily becoming one of my favorite releases of 2011. I would strongly recommend getting a copy A.S.A.P. from either the band or your favorite vendor.
Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on July 10th, 2011