Classic Rock Bottom

by "proggy" Jon

Eloy--The Vision, The Sword And The Pyre (August 2017)

1. The Age Of The Hundred Years' War

2. Early Signs...From A Longed For Miracle

3. The Call

4. The Ride By Night...Towards The Predestined Fate

4. The Prophecy

Steven Wilson--To The Bone (August 2017)

1. Nowhere Now

2. The Same Asylum As Before

3. Permanating

4. People Who Eat Darkness

5. Detonation

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Steven Wilson...  Told Ya So!

So far this is for me the #1 album of the year, I love the pop-rock of it and I love how it fits into his progression as an artist.  A couple NSFW moments but other than that it really moves long quite nicely.  Yes I am biased, Yes I am a Porcupine Tree fan, Yes to whatever else you want to say to prove me wrong.  I will say this, its not as strong as Hand and Raven so it could be moved down my list.  But looking down the road theres very few chances left to do that.

ELOY!!! ...  ELOY!

Good thing bossman notified of us of this release!  I like trippy German space prog, its got its place!  And Eloy is very good at it. They are very good at the keyboard work, no cliché keyboard crap, but very well written and interesting keyboards.  Did I hear that one song right?  The song is on a mission from God?  COOOOLLLL!!!!  Not sure this will fill a space in my collection but I like it!

I know, right???

I had to run down to Sam Goody to pick up that Eloy album when I saw his post from yesterday today on FB.

This may be the #1 NMC post of the year!!

Eloy - The first two songs do nothing for me at all.  I'm not a fan of the male vocalist. But track three changes it up a bit. The bass work on that track is fantastic.  I'm even okay with that dude's vocals.  I think the spoken word portion works well here. The following instrumental keeps my attention as well. Unfortunately, the closer doesn't keep my attention. I really can't remember what I thought of previous posts that involved Eloy, but this was a two-for-five performance.  Not bad but not something I'd consider purchasing.  So I guess it would be thumbs slightly below even.

Steve Wilson - This first track is somewhat upbeat while being mellow at the same time.  It's a smooth vocal and I like it. Track 2 is pretty uptempo too for Wilson.  The falsetto is a good thing when someone can really pull it off.  I don't think Wilson butchers it by any means, but I don't think it's as good as it could be.  The guitar solo is pretty good too. Permanating is the pop song, huh?  More falsetto.  Same result.  But the beat here is pretty good.  Sounds kind of like Coldplay actually.  I didn't realize Jon and Scott liked Coldplay.  All that aside, it's another upbeat, uptempo song that doesn't put me to sleep at all.  Why oh why do musicians screw with their vocals.  Stupid distortion. That's how I feel about track 4, although I will say it's quite aggressive.  In a good way.  The last song drags for about two and a half minutes, kind of like his last album. More vocal distortion.  This song just drags on too long.  

Overall, better than I expected.  Three quite good songs out of five.  I'm going with thumbs just above even.

Eloy is one of the favorite bands to my friend who eats sleeps and breaths progressive rock. He really understood my taste and he did recommend lots of albums I ended up enjoying. He also recommended all of the Eloy albums and I bought 8-10 of them. Never had a time to binge listen those CD's (I think it's a requirement), but when I read about The Vision being different than anything else Eloy did before, I checked out the whole album.

Unfortunately, this is not my cup of tea and not to their own fault. It's probably me. Not a huge fan of conceptual albums and even less when they span over multiple releases. This is one of those instances and it's the smallest problem of the two, for the other is all that spoken word interruptions at the strangest places, like in the middle of the song. I do like the music and the musicianship is top notch, but this one feels more like an audio book to me than a music CD.

Too bad I lost contact with my friend. Would love to pick his brain on this one. If nothing else the new release brought them back to my memory and made me want to listen their previous work. I hope it's the narration part what makes this CD different than the others.


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