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(23:18, Melodic Revolution Records)
US artist Leon ALVARADO released his debut album "Leon Alvarado Plays Genesis and Other Original Stuff" back in 2009, and has since released two more EPs. "2014: Music From An Expanded Universe" is the most recent of these, and was released by the US label Melodic Revolution Records in 2014. Cooperating with Alvarado on most of the tracks here we find bassist and Warr guitarist Trey Gunn (ex-King Crimson), and his presence is notable. There is a slight, unnerving touch to the material, subtly King Crimsonian, you might say, but in terms of direct associations the mood and general atmosphere is one that is actually much closer to one of Trey's other ventures, namely Quodia. Dark: ambient soundscapes are a key feature throughout this EP, most often with contrasting light and dark dominant textures. These are then paired off with more energetic passages that come across as a blend of early 80's King Crimson and neo progressive rock, at least in the longer compositions, with subtle unnerving details the main aspect of the former and jubilant keyboards of the latter. This blend of sophisticated dark ambient soundscapes and what might be described as neo progressive rock works fairly well, at least as long as you have a fascination for both of these stylistic expressions. If you tend to enjoy Trey Gunn's more ambient-oriented material, as well as bands like IQ, then this EP is one that might warrant a check.
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