White Willow's 5th album Signal To Noise sees the band goes further away from the retro-prog roots to a more modern progressive rock band similar in many ways to Paatos and The Gathering. This band keeps on metamorphoses with each release. It will sure leave some progressive music fans that in the cold, that were hoping for more of a folky & dark symphonic prog sound that the band started with. Now the music has a rather upbeat feel to it like on the catchy song, Joyride. I can so hear this on a radio or video channel. It has hit potential written all over it.
Also Signal To Noise marks yet another change, this time most notably in the vocal department. The new singer, Trude Eidtang, follows in the tradition of great singers in the band previously. She reminds me a lot of Anneke van Giersbergen, Tori Amos, and Kate Bush. Her addition and the revamped sound will definitely garner in a new audience as well as appeasing older fans.
Upon several listens, I will say that there are still enough signs of classic progressive rock in White Willow to say that fans (open-minded ones) of Anglagard, Wobbler, and Anekdoten, as well as early Genesis and King Crimson will surely enjoy over and over.
There are two of my favorite tracks on the album that blends of the old and new styles, called "The Lingering" and "Dusk City". Bother remind me of a perfect mix of The Gathering and King Crimson that I return to every time i put on the album. On whole this is a very solid album and one I’d recommend especially for modern rock fans that want more originality in their music.
Reviewed by Ron Fuchs on October 6th, 2006